Monday 22 October 2007, by European Commission
Last Friday – 12 October – marked the passing of the deadline to put into national law the 2005 Directive setting out a specific procedure for allowing third-country nationals into the EU for the purposes of carrying out scientific research, or «researchers’ visa». Until today only 6 Member States (Belgium, Germany, Hungary, Austria, Portugal and Romania) have notified the Commission of full implementation of the Directive. 4 Member States (France, Latvia, Lithuania and the Slovak Republic) have notified partial implementation. As of this date the Commission is entitled to take steps to open infringement proceedings against these Member States who have not yet notified of their implementing measures and those Member States who have notified partial implementation only. The Commission deeply regrets that so many Member States have not yet transposed this Directive into their national legislation and hopes this situation to be remedied as soon as possible so as to avoid initiating infringement procedures.
European Commission Vice-President Franco Frattini said «I urge those Member States who have not yet transposed this Directive to adopt the necessary legislation and administrative procedures without delay. Political commitment by these Member States to better attract and retain high-quality research talent in Europe has not yet been mirrored by a concrete engagement in setting up the necessary rules and procedures coherent with this goal», he added.
European Science and Research Commissioner Janez Potočnik said «Member States must honour their commitment to create a system for scientists from outside the EU who want to carry out their research here. If Europe is to be a world leader in science, then it must be open to the world. The current system can be off-putting for scientists from abroad who want to work with their European counterparts. These changes are therefore essential for the development of the European Research Area.»
Council Directive 2005/71/EC setting out a specific procedure for admitting third-country nationals for the purposes of scientific research, was adopted in October 2005. It requires Member States to bring into force necessary laws, regulations and administrative provisions to comply with this Directive by no later than 12 October 2007, and to inform the Commission of such provisions.
This legislation is seen by the Commission as a key step in increasing the attractiveness of the European Research Area, which is one of the cornerstones of the Lisbon Strategy to make Europe the most competitive and dynamic knowledge economy in the world. It is a clear signal to the research community that Europe encourages «brain circulation» in an increasingly international scientific world and supports the greater mobility of ideas. By allowing scientists from outside the EU to carry out their research here, working with European scientists, the researchers’ visa system will help the European Union to face the challenges of globalisation.
For details of the «researchers’ visa»: IP/05/123.
Brussels, 15 October 2007
Source : Europa