Informal meeting of EU heads of state or government, 03/02/2017

Agenda highlights

The informal summit in Malta, hosted by the Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat and chaired by European Council President Donald Tusk, will consist of two parts.

The details of the meeting were presented in the invitation letter to the leaders, published by President Tusk on 31 January 2017.

First working session on migration

In the morning, the 28 EU heads of state of government will address the external dimension of migration. They are expected to focus their discussions on the Central Mediterranean route and Libya.

With the spring approaching, leader are expected to agree on a number of immediate and concrete measures to stem migratory flows, break the business model of smugglers and save lives.

In particular, leaders will discuss the need to step up cooperation with the Libyan authorities.

“The situation there is different and even more complex that in the east, and we have to be innovative while drawing on the principles that have guided our action over the past months”, said President Tusk in the invitation letter. “We will at the end of our discussion adopt an ambitious declaration setting out the way ahead in a clear and concrete way.”

The EU leaders should confirm its support for the Government of National Accord and plan its assistance to Libyan regional and local communities as well as international organisations active in the country.

The priorities will include:

  • training, equipping and supporting the Libyan national coast guard
  • increased efforts to disrupt the smuggling business by involving Libya and relevant international partners
  • improving the socio-economic situation of local communities in Libya

Furthermore, leaders are expected to call for increased cooperation with UNHCR and IOM in the following areas:

  • ensuring adequate reception capacities and conditions in Libya for migrants
  • enhancing information campaigns aimed at migrants
  • stepping up voluntary return activities

Leaders should also emphasise the need to help reducing the pressure on Libya’s land border by enhancing Libya’s border management capacity and by working with neighbouring countries.

Second working session on the preparations for the 60th anniversary of the Rome Treaties

The afternoon session will be an occasion for the 27 leaders to prepare for the upcoming 60th anniversary of the Rome Treaties on 25 March 2017. 

The discussions will build upon the political reflection on the future of the EU with 27 member states, launched immediately after the UK voted to leave the European Union on 23 June 2016 and continued in Bratislava on 16 September 2016.