EU-Japan PNR agreement: Council authorises opening of negotiations

The Council today adopted a decision authorising the opening of negotiations between the EU and Japan for an agreement on the transfer and use of passenger name record (PNR) data. The Commission will now start negotiations with Japan, on the basis of the negotiating directives adopted by the Council.

Japan is a close partner in the fight against terrorism and serious crime. The application of PNR data to enhance security, while at the same time ensuring a strong protection of citizens’ fundamental rights, will allow for this partnership to develop further.

Davor Božinović, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior of Croatia

This agreement will regulate the transfer and use of PNR data to prevent and fight terrorism and serious transnational crime. It will fully ensure the respect of fundamental rights, in particular, the right to protection of personal data, by setting the necessary safeguards and controls as provided by EU law.


PNR data is personal information provided by passengers and collected and held by air carriers. It includes information such as the name of the passenger, travel dates, itineraries, seats, baggage, contact details and means of payment.

At EU level, the transfer and processing of PNR data for the purpose of fighting terrorism and serious crime is regulated by the PNR directive, which was adopted in 2016.

The EU has already signed agreements allowing EU carriers to transfer PNR data to the United States and Australia. In December 2017, the Council authorised the Commission to re-negotiate the envisaged PNR agreement with Canada to align it with the data protection requirements set by the EU Court of Justice in its opinion of 26 July 2017. The negotiations with Canada have been concluded and are pending finalisation.

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