Question 4 January 2021 Özlem Demirel (The Left)
Subject: Frontex deployment in Gibraltar
In the wake of Brexit, the Spanish and UK governments have reached an agreement on Gibraltar. Under the agreement, the exclave will become part of the Schengen area with open borders. The EU’s external borders at Gibraltar’s international airport and port are to be monitored by the European Border and Coastguard Agency (Frontex), with no Spanish personnel involved. Supervision of these Frontex checks is to be exercised by Spain, however. After a four-year ‘implementation phase’, Spain’s Guardia Civil could take over the task.
- What are the details of the agreement between the Spanish and UK governments on Gibraltar’s inclusion in the Schengen area, and what tasks will the Spanish police and gendarmerie carry out in that connection?
- Where, for how long and in what numbers are Frontex personnel to be deployed in Gibraltar, and what specific officers (with figures for the ranks of Border Surveillance Officer, Frontex Support Officer, Advanced Level Document Officer, National Official, First Line Officer, Second Line Officer, Second Line Airport Officer, Advanced Level Document Officer, Stolen Vehicle Detection Officer, Debriefing Officer, Screening Expert, Registration & Fingerprint Expert) will be involved?
- From which countries and from which categories of the Frontex permanent reserve will the Frontex personnel come, and to what extent could Spain take over their tasks at a later date?
Answer 2 March 2021 President von der Leyen
The Trade and Cooperation Agreement between the European Union and the United Kingdom (UK) does not apply to Gibraltar nor has any effects on its territory.
Spain and the United Kingdom have discussed a framework for Gibraltar’s future relationship with the EU and have transmitted to the Commission a non-paper setting out this agreed framework, together with a request to initiate the procedure for the negotiation of an EU-UK agreement on Gibraltar.
In line with the Commission’s statement attached to the Council Decision on the signing, on behalf of the Union, and on provisional application of the Trade and Cooperation Agreement between the EU and the UK, the Commission is currently working on a draft negotiation mandate, which will be proposed to the Council.
At this stage, it is too early to discuss any details that might be included in a mandate to the Commission.