Tag Archives: Management

Cohesion policy to deliver the Lisbon Strategy

Cohesion policy to deliver the Lisbon Strategy

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Cohesion policy to deliver the Lisbon Strategy

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Regional policy > Review and the future of regional policy

Cohesion policy to deliver the Lisbon Strategy (2007-2013)

Document or Iniciative

Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions of 11 December 2007 – Member States and Regions delivering the Lisbon strategy for growth and jobs through EU cohesion policy, 2007-2013 [COM(2007) 798 final – Not published in the Official Journal].

Summary

The Commission sets out an initial overview of the results of the negotiations relating to the new generation of cohesion programmes and strategies. It looks at the part which these can play in the renewed Lisbon strategy.

This Communication is part of the package defining the actions taken by the European Union to achieve the Lisbon objectives for 2008-2011. It assesses the progress made towards achieving the objectives of this strategy in the period 2005-2007.

Cohesion policy at the heart of the Lisbon process

Since its reform in 2006, cohesion policy has focused on the achievement of the priorities of the Lisbon strategy for the period 2007-2013, namely: making the EU an attractive place to invest and work, encouraging innovation, entrepreneurship and growth of the knowledge economy, and creating more and better jobs.

The reformed cohesion policy has brought about the decentralisation of responsibilities to local and regional partners, the pooling of their knowledge and resources, and the development of strategies suited to local and regional levels.

The efforts to achieve the Lisbon objectives must continue, taking account of the variability of contexts and the difficulties facing each country. For instance, the Member States are required to provide funding for actions which achieve these objectives and for the structural reforms set out in the National Reform Programmes (NRPs).

Focusing on the Lisbon priorities

For 2007-2013, the budget for cohesion policy amounts to 347 billion euro, with an additional 160 billion euro from public and private national resources. Around 80 % of these resources will be allocated to regions under the Convergence objective: 65 % of these funds will be used for the Lisbon strategy. Regions under the Regional Competitiveness and Employment Objective will account for 16 % of cohesion policy resources, 82 % of which will be used for actions linked to the Lisbon strategy.

Efforts will focus on the four priorities of the Lisbon strategy, namely:

  • investing more in knowledge and innovation;
  • unlocking business potential (particularly of SMEs);
  • improving employability through flexicurity;
  • better management of energy resources.

Investing in knowledge and innovation

The cohesion programmes invest 85 billion euro in knowledge and innovation, in particular in order to improve the innovation capacity of businesses (49.5 billion euro) and skills, to disseminate, use and design technologies, to create businesses and promote a more flexible workforce.

In this field, it is important to exploit existing poles of excellence, improve national and regional capacities, leverage private financing and draw on existing potential. This can be done through joint action to launch a new generation of world-class infrastructures, laboratories and research instruments.

Unlocking business potential

Cohesion policy helps small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to invest in human capital, install efficient management systems, offer a good working environment, anticipate economic change and reduce administrative formalities.

For 2007-2013, almost 19 billion euro are allocated to helping SMEs improve their competitiveness and gain access to the world markets. Thanks to the JEREMIE and JESSICA initiatives, which seek to improve the availability of innovative financial engineering products in the regions, SMEs can also have access to other sources of aid.

The JASMINE initiative has been adopted in the field of supporting micro-credit, in order to develop employment and boost social inclusion. A Communication proposing guidance on the synergies between cohesion policy, the Research Framework Programmes and the Competitiveness and Innovation Programme has also been issued.

Improving employability through flexicurity

For the period 2007-2013, around 50 billion euro have been allocated under cohesion policy to financing various aspects of flexicurity. The aim of the new programmes is to improve employability through flexicurity by helping businesses to develop human resources strategies and more productive working methods and to ease the transition process resulting from restructuring.

Labour market and education and training policies ensure the provision of the necessary skills and qualifications for the world of work. Funding earmarked for the reform of education and training systems will be increased (25.3 billion euro).

Better management of energy resources

The new programmes attach greater importance to improving the management of energy resources and the move towards an efficient and integrated energy policy. Compared to the period 2000-2006, investments in renewable energies and energy efficiency will be five times higher for the Convergence objective and seven times higher for the Regional Competitiveness and Employment objective.

Addressing recommendations and priorities

Investments to further the achievement of the Lisbon objectives affect a number of fields, the complexity of which could lead to difficulties for the Member States. In order to deal with this, 51 billion euro are earmarked for programmes which aim to strengthen synergies between environmental protection, risk prevention and growth.

A suitable transport network is needed for economic development. Priority is given to the development of Trans-European Transport Networks (TEN-T), with a budget of 38 billion euro. Projects which facilitate access to TEN-T and promote more environmentally-friendly transport systems will benefit from 34 billion euro.

Almost 3.6 billion euro will be used to help modernise public administrations and services and allow them to develop and implement effective policies. The JASPERS technical assistance facility will also help the new Member States to implement quality projects likely to receive EU financial support.

Promoting partnerships

Overall, there is good cooperation between those responsible for coordinating the implementation of the NRPs (National Reform Programmes) and those developing strategies and programmes for cohesion policy. Efforts must continue to be made where this is not yet the case.

All stakeholders must cooperate intensively for the preparation and implementation of cohesion policy programmes. Cohesion policy associates both “vertical” partners (Community, national, regional and local authorities) and “horizontal” stakeholders (business representatives, trade unions, NGOs, etc.).

Evaluation and monitoring of cohesion policy in the Lisbon process

Regular reports on the contribution of cohesion policy to the improvement of growth and employment are presented for the purpose of cross-checking and to guarantee the coherent management of the NRPs and cohesion policy programmes.

The Member States will submit a report each year on the aid allocated to each programme in addition to reports in 2009 and 2012 on the contribution of cohesion policy to the Lisbon agenda.

The Commission will draft a report (in 2010 and 2013) on national contributions and the need to adjust the programmes to the new challenges.

Related Acts

Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions of 14 May 2008 on the results of the negotiations concerning cohesion policy strategies and programmes for the programming period 2007-2013 [COM(2008) 301 final – Not published in the Official Journal].
Following the negotiations conducted with the Member States, the Commission presents the priorities of cohesion policy programming for 2007-2013. In line with the objectives of the Lisbon Strategy, the financial resources allocated to the Convergence, Competitiveness and Territorial Cooperation Objectives support innovation, research, skills and human capital.

The regional and sectoral strategies have been adapted to new challenges. For example, investments should contribute to the global competitiveness of European businesses by facilitating their access to the markets and by helping them to deal with restructuring. The ageing of the population and demographic changes in European society call in particular for increased labour participation and enhanced workers’ skills. Cohesion policy is aimed in particular at the inclusion of migrants and the fight against discrimination, poverty and exclusion. The programmes support the development of new environmental services and new skills, as well as the financing of infrastructure, in order to achieve the European objectives in the areas of sustainable development, climate change and energy policy.

The decentralised management of the Funds is essential to the effectiveness of the programmes. The multi-level partnership introduced between the public authorities and civil society in the preparation of strategies also makes it possible to adapt investment more closely to regional and local situations. In addition, exchanges of good practices based on previous programming contribute towards the effectiveness of public spending.

Good practices are spread within the framework of the Community initiatives, particularly the new “Regions for Economic Change” initiative and the Territorial Cooperation Objective.

The .eu top-level domain

The .eu top-level domain

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about The .eu top-level domain

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Information society > Internet Online activities and ICT standards

The “.eu” top-level domain

Document or Iniciative

Regulation (EC) No 733/2002 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 22 April 2002 on the implementation of the .eu Top Level Domain.

Summary

This Regulation aims to establish the conditions of implementation of the “.eu” top-level domain (TLD), and in particular to provide for the designation of a Registry and establish the general policy framework within which the Registry will function.

The creation of the “.eu” TLD is one of the objectives set out in the eEurope 2002 action plan in order to accelerate electronic commerce and promote the use of the Internet.

The “.eu” domain will be additional to, not replace, those which already exist within the EU (e.g. “.fr” for France or “.it” for Italy) and will give users the option of having a pan-European Internet identity (mainly website or e-mail addresses).

Objectives

The implementation of the “.eu” TLD meets the following objectives:

  • to promote the use of Internet networks and increase users’ choice by providing a complementary registration domain to existing country code top-level domains (ccTLDs) or global registration in the generic top-level domains;
  • to improve the interoperability of trans-European servers by ensuring the availability of .eu name servers in the EU;
  • to increase the visibility of the European internal market on the world network and promote the image of the European Union on global information networks.

Characteristics of the Registry

The European Commission is responsible for designating the Registry after publishing a call for expressions of interest in the Official Journal.

The Registry is to be a non-profit organisation, formed in accordance with the law of a Member State and established within the EU.

Obligations of the Registry

The Registry has the following tasks:

  • to register domain names in the .eu TLD through any accredited .eu Registrar requested by any company, organisation or natural person established or resident in the EU;
  • to adopt the registration policy for the .eu TLD in consultation with the Commission and other interested parties, in accordance with public policy rules;
  • to impose fees directly related to costs incurred;
  • to implement the extra-judicial settlement-of-conflicts policy in order to resolve promptly disputes between domain name holders regarding rights relating to names, as well as disputes relating to individual decisions by the Registry;
  • to adopt and implement procedures for the accreditation of .eu registrars;
  • to ensure the integrity of the databases of domain names.

Policy framework

The European Commission is responsible for adopting the public policy rules concerning the implementation and functions of the .eu TLD and the public policy principles on registration. These rules include in particular:

  • an extra-judicial settlement-of-conflicts policy;
  • public policy on speculative and abusive registration of domain names;
  • a policy on possible revocation of domain names;
  • issues of language and geographical concepts;
  • treatment of intellectual property and other rights.

Reservation of rights

The EU retains all rights relating to the “.eu” TLD including, in particular, intellectual property rights and other rights to the Registry databases.

Implementation report

The Commission will have to submit a report to the European Parliament and the Council on the implementation, effectiveness and functioning of the .eu TLD one year after the adoption of the Regulation and thereafter every two years.

References

Act Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal

Regulation (EC) No 733/2002

30.4.2002

OJ L 113, 30.4.2002

Amending act(s) Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal

Regulation (EC) No 1137/2008

11.12.2008

OJ L 311, 21.11.2008

Related Acts

Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council of 6 July 2007 – Report on the implementation, functioning and effectiveness of the “.eu” TLD [COM(2007) 385 final].
Two years after its launch, the “.eu” top-level domain (TLD) is an undeniable success. The report indicates that “.eu” domain names are being actively used and that they are meeting real demand among European citizens, industry and other organisations. According to EURid, more than 2.8 million .eu domains have been set up on the Internet, making “.eu” Europe’s fourth most popular TLD and the ninth most popular worldwide, after such major top-level names as “.com”, “.net” and “.info”. The challenge now is to further improve the service given to customers by, for instance, adopting a code of conduct for registrars.

Commission Regulation (EC) No 874/2004 of 28 April 2004 laying down public policy rules concerning the implementation and functions of the .eu Top Level Domain and the principles governing registration [Official Journal L 162 of 30.4.2004].
This Regulation sets out a number of elements needed to implement Regulation (EC) No 733/2002, including the contents of applications for registration, rules for accrediting registrars, procedures for languages and reserved geographical names and the speculative and abusive registration of domain names.
It also establishes a phased registration procedure and an alternative extrajudicial conflict settlement.
Applications for registration must be sent to registrars accredited by the EURid Registry designated by the Commission to manage “.eu” domain names (see below). Registrations will be made on a first come, first served basis (Article 14).

Executive Agency for Competitiveness and Innovation

Executive Agency for Competitiveness and Innovation

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Executive Agency for Competitiveness and Innovation

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Institutional affairs > The institutions bodies and agencies of the union

Executive Agency for Competitiveness and Innovation (EACI)

Document or Iniciative

Commission Decision 2004/20/EC of 23 December 2003 setting up an executive agency, the “Intelligent Energy Executive Agency”, to manage Community action in the field of energy in application of Council Regulation (EC) No 58/2003 [See amending acts].

Summary

This Decision established the Executive Agency for Competitiveness and Innovation (EACI), previously the Intelligent Energy Executive Agency, for the period 1 January 2004 – 31 December 2015. Governed by Council Regulation (EC) No 58/2003, the EACI is responsible for managing Community action in the fields of energy, entrepreneurship and innovation, as well as sustainable freight transport. It is located in Brussels.

The EACI implements tasks under the Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme (CIP) 2007-13 and the second Marco Polo Programme 2007-13. The tasks consist of the following:

  • management of specific projects within the Entrepreneurship and Innovation as well as the Intelligent Energy – Europe Programmes;
  • adoption of budget implementation instruments and management of implementing measures for contracts and grants;
  • collection, analysis and communication of the information required for implementing the Programmes.

The Agency is also responsible for managing the implementing measures of the Intelligent Energy – Europe 2003-06 and the Marco Polo 2003-06 Programmes. In addition, the EACI may be given responsibility for executing other similar tasks under the CIP or other Community programmes. In such an event, this Decision will be amended to take into account the supplementary tasks.

The EACI is managed by a Steering Committee and a Director. Both are appointed by the Commission, the first for three and the latter for five years.

The Agency is financed from the funds of the CIP and the second Marco Polo Programme. Any supplementary tasks will be financed from the funds of the relevant Community programmes. Its administrative budget is implemented on the basis of Commission Regulation (EC) No 1653/2004.

The Commission holds supervisory authority over the Agency, which must regularly report back on the progress it has achieved in implementing its Programmes.

Act Entry into force – Date of expiry Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
Decision 2004/20/EC 23.12.2003 – 31.12.2015 OJ L 5 of 9.1.2004
Amending act(s) Entry into force – Date of expiry Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
Decision 2007/372/EC 31.5.2007 – 31.12.2015 OJ L 140 of 1.6.2007

This summary is for information only. It is not designed to interpret or replace the reference document, which remains the only binding legal text.

Research Executive Agency

Research Executive Agency

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Research Executive Agency

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Institutional affairs > The institutions bodies and agencies of the union

Research Executive Agency

Document or Iniciative

Commission Decision 2008/46/EC of 14 December 2007 setting up the ‘Research Executive Agency’ for the management of certain areas of the specific Community programmes People, Capacities and Cooperation in the field of research in application of Council Regulation (EC) No 58/2003.

Summary

This Decision establishes the ‘Research Executive Agency’ for the period 1 January 2008 – 31 December 2017. The Agency, governed by Council Regulation (EC) No 58/2003, is responsible for managing some Community activities in the field of research. The tasks of the Agency fall within the scope of the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) of the European Community for research, technological development and demonstration activities (2007 to 2013). In particular, they correspond to specific projects implementing the People Specific Programme, the Research for the Benefit of SMEs part of the Capacities Specific Programme, and the Space and Security themes of the Cooperation Specific Programme.

The Agency’s tasks consist of the following:

  • management of parts of the specific programmes listed above;
  • execution of the relevant parts of the budget;
  • collection, analysis and communication of information to guide programme implementation;
  • provision of logistical and administrative support.

The Commission may also entrust the Agency with similar tasks for additional areas of FP7.

The Agency is managed by a Steering Committee and a Director. Both are appointed by the Commission, the first for two years and the latter for four years. The appointments may be renewed.

Financing and supervision

The Agency is financed from funds of the People, Capacities and Cooperation Specific Programmes of FP7. For any additional tasks entrusted under FP7, the financing will come from corresponding funds. The financial regulations are established by the Commission Regulation (EC) No 1653/2004.

The Commission has supervisory authority over the Agency, which is obliged to provide regular progress reports on the implementation of its programmes.

References

Act Entry into force – Date of expiry Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
Decision 2008/46/EC

14.12.2007 – 31.12.2017

OJ L 11 of 15.1.2008

The European Research Council Executive Agency

The European Research Council Executive Agency

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about The European Research Council Executive Agency

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Institutional affairs > The institutions bodies and agencies of the union

The European Research Council Executive Agency

Document or Iniciative

Commission Decision 2008/37/EC of 14 December 2007 setting up the ‘European Research Council Executive Agency’ for the management of the specific Community programme ‘Ideas’ in the field of frontier research in application of Council Regulation (EC) No 58/2003.

Summary

This Decision establishes ‘The European Research Council Executive Agency’ for the period 1 January 2008 – 31 December 2017. Governed by Council Regulation (EC) No 58/2003, the Agency is responsible for the management of Community activity in the field of frontier research.

The tasks of the Agency lie within the scope of the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) of the European Community for research, technological development and demonstration activities (2007 to 2013). They consist of implementing the FP7 Specific Programme ‘Ideas’ according to the guidelines set by the Commission and the principles and methodology set by the ‘Ideas’ annual work programmes, as adopted from the Scientific Council proposals. In order to fulfil its delegated tasks, the Agency will do the following:

  • award contracts and grants and manage entire life-cycles of projects selected on the basis of the sole criterion of excellence of proposals;
  • adopt budget implementation tasks;
  • collect, analyse and communicate the information needed to implement the Programme.

The Agency is managed by a Steering Committee and a Director, both appointed by the Commission. The Steering Committee is appointed for two years, the Director for four years. The appointments may be renewed.

In accordance with the FP7 Specific Programme ‘Ideas’, the Agency also provides assistance to the Scientific Council of the European Research Council (ERC), as adopted by the Council Decision 2006/972/EC.

Financing and supervision

The finances for the Agency are derived from the funds for the FP7 Specific Programme ‘Ideas’ (2007-13). The operating budget is to be implemented as stipulated by Regulation (EC) No 1653/2004.

The Agency is under the supervisory authority of the Commission, to which it must report regularly on the progress made in the implementation of its programme.

Background

With its Decision 2007/134 of 2 February 2007, the Commission established the ERC to implement the FP7 Specific Programme ‘Ideas’. The ERC comprises an independent Scientific Council, which was set up simultaneously and is composed of 22 high level scientists, and a dedicated implementation structure in the form of the executive agency.

References

Act Entry into force – Date of expiry Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
Decision 2008/37/EC

14.12.2007 – 31.12.2017

OJ L 9 of 12.1.2008

Second generation Schengen Information System – former 1st pillar regulation

Second generation Schengen Information System – former 1st pillar regulation

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Second generation Schengen Information System – former 1st pillar regulation

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Justice freedom and security > Free movement of persons asylum and immigration

Second generation Schengen Information System (SIS II) – former 1st pillar regulation

The SIS II Regulation lays down the technical aspects and the operation of SIS II, the conditions for issuing alerts on refusal of entry or stay for non-EU nationals, the processing of data relating to alerts, and conditions of data access and protection. It constitutes the legislative basis for governing SIS II with respect to matters falling under Title IV of the Treaty establishing the European Community (former first pillar).

Document or Iniciative

Regulation (EC) No 1987/2006 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 December 2006 on the establishment, operation and use of the second-generation Schengen Information System (SIS II).

Summary

The second generation Schengen Information System (SIS II) will be a large-scale information system containing alerts * on persons and objects. It will be used by border guards, customs officers, visa- and law-enforcement authorities throughout the Schengen area, with a view to ensuring a high level of security. This new system is currently undergoing extensive testing in close cooperation with European Union (EU) countries and associated countries participating in the Schengen area (referred to below as the Member States *) and will replace the current system, providing enhanced functionalities.

The SIS II Regulation constitutes the necessary legislative basis for governing SIS II with respect to alert procedures falling under Title IV of the Treaty establishing the European Community (former first pillar). It is supplemented by a decision relating to procedures falling under Title VI of the Treaty on European Union (former third pillar).

Technical architecture and ways of operating SIS II

SIS II will be composed of:

  • a central system (“Central SIS II”);
  • a national system (the “N.SIS II”) in each Member State (the national data systems that will communicate with the Central SIS II);
  • a communication infrastructure between the central system and the national systems providing an encrypted virtual network dedicated to SIS II data and the exchange of data between the authorities responsible for the exchange of all supplementary information * (SIRENE Bureaux).

SIS II data will be entered, updated, deleted and searched via the various national systems. The central system, which will perform technical supervision and administration functions, is located in Strasbourg (France). It will provide the necessary services for the entry and processing of SIS II data. A backup central system, capable of ensuring all functionalities of the principal central system in the event of failure of this system, is located near Salzburg (Austria). Each Member State will be responsible for setting up, operating and maintaining its own national system and for connecting it to the central system. It designates an authority, the national SIS II office (N.SIS II office), which has central responsibility for its national SIS II project. This authority will be responsible for the smooth operation and security of its national system.

Each Member State designates its SIRENE Bureau. Supplementary information relating to SIS II alerts will be exchanged in accordance with the provisions of the “SIRENE Manual” and by using the communication infrastructure. Member States will keep a reference to the decisions giving rise to an alert at the SIRENE Bureau.

Member States will be liable for any damage caused to a person through the use of the national SIS II systems. They will also ensure that any potential misuse of data entered in SIS II or any exchange of supplementary information contrary to this regulation will be subject to effective, proportionate and dissuasive penalties.

Operational management of the Central SIS II will consist of all the necessary tasks for keeping it running 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, in accordance with this regulation.

After a transitional period, a management authority, funded from the general budget of the EU, shall be responsible for the operational management of the Central SIS II and for a number of tasks relating to the communication infrastructure (supervision, security and coordination of relations between Member States and the provider). The Commission will be responsible for all other tasks relating to the communication infrastructure.

During a transitional period before the management authority takes up its responsibilities, the Commission shall be responsible for the operational management of Central SIS II. In accordance with the Financial Regulation applicable to the general budget of the European Communities, the Commission may delegate the operational management and tasks relating to implementation of the budget to national public-sector bodies in two different countries that meet the specific criteria outlined in Article 15, paragraph 4 of the SIS II Regulation.

The regulation contains provisions to ensure adequate protection of personal data. In cooperation with the national supervisory authorities and the European Data Protection Supervisor, the Commission will accompany the start of the operation of SIS II with an information campaign informing the public about the objectives, the data stored, the authorities having access and the rights of individuals.

Alerts issued in respect of non-EU nationals for the purpose of refusing entry and stay

SIS II will only contain those categories of data supplied by each of the Member States, which are necessary for alerts for refusing entry or stay. Once the system is operational and alerts are included in it, the SIS II will only be possible to store the following information on persons for whom an alert has been issued: surname(s) and forename(s), name(s) at birth, aliases, specific physical characteristics, place and date of birth, sex, photographs, fingerprints, nationality(ies), whether the person concerned is armed, violent or has escaped, reason for the alert, authority issuing the alert, a reference to the decision giving rise to the alert and link(s) to other alerts issued in SIS II. It will also include the action to be taken in the event that there is a “hit” (i.e. if a competent national authority finds an alert in SIS II concerning a non-EU national on whom they have carried out a check). Should a Member State be unable to perform the requested action after obtaining a hit in SIS II, it will immediately inform the Member State that issued the alert.

Photographs and fingerprints will be used to confirm the identity of a non-EU national who has been located as a result of an alphanumeric search made in SIS II. As soon as this becomes technically possible, fingerprints may also be used to allow identification of a non-EU national on the basis of his/her biometric identifier. Before this functionality is implemented in SIS II, the Commission will present a report on the availability and readiness of the required technology.

Data on non-EU nationals, for whom an alert has been issued for refusing entry or stay, will be entered on the basis of a national alert based on a decision by the competent courts and administrative authorities taken on the basis of an individual assessment. An alert will be entered where the decision is based on a threat to public policy, to public security or to national security, which the presence of the non-EU national in question in the territory of a Member State may pose. It will also be possible to enter an alert when the decision is based on the fact that the non-EU national has been subject to a measure involving expulsion.

Access to and processing of data in SIS II

Authorities responsible for border control and other police and customs checks within the Member State concerned will have a right to access alerts. By extension, it will also be possible for national judicial authorities to access the system for the performance of their tasks. In any case, users will only be able to access data that is required for the performance of their tasks.

Before issuing an alert, Member States will determine whether the case is relevant enough to warrant the entry of the alert in SIS II. These alerts will only be kept for the time required to achieve the purposes for which they were entered. A Member State issuing an alert shall review the need to keep it within three years of its entry in SIS II.

It will only be possible to copy data for technical purposes. Such copies, which lead to off-line databases, may be retained for no more than 48 hours. It will not be possible to use data for administrative purposes.

A Member State issuing an alert will be responsible for ensuring that the data are accurate, up-to-date and lawfully entered in SIS II. Only the Member State issuing an alert will be authorised to modify, add to, correct, update or delete data that it has entered. If a Member State other than that issuing an alert obtains evidence suggesting that an item of data is incorrect, it will inform the Member State that issued the alert as soon as possible. The Member State that issued the alert will check the communication and, if necessary, correct or delete the item in question without delay. If the Member States are unable to reach an agreement within two months, the Member State that did not issue the alert will submit the matter to the European Data Protection Supervisor who will act as a mediator, jointly with the national supervisory authorities concerned.

It will be possible for a Member State to create a link between alerts it enters in SIS II, but this should only be done when there is a clear operational need.

Data processed in SIS II will not be transferred or made available to non-EU countries or to international organisations.

Data protection

Processing of sensitive categories of data (personal data revealing racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious or philosophical beliefs or trade-union membership and data concerning health or sex life) will be prohibited.

Any person will have the right to request access to data relating to him/her (personal data *) that has been entered in SIS II, and to have factually inaccurate personal data corrected or unlawfully stored personal data deleted.

Information may not be communicated to the data subject if this is indispensable for the performance of a task in connection with an alert or for the protection of the rights and freedoms of third parties. Regarding the exercise of their rights of correction and deletion, individuals will be informed about the follow-up as soon as possible, and in any event no later than three months from the date of their application for correction or deletion.

It will be possible for any person to bring an action before the competent courts or authorities to access, correct, delete, or obtain information or compensation in connection with an alert relating to him/her.

The authority or authorities designated in each Member State, endowed with the powers referred to in Directive 95/46/EC on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data, will independently monitor the lawfulness of the processing of SIS II personal data on their territory and the transmission of this data from their territory. They will ensure that an audit of the data-processing operations in the N.SIS II is carried out at least every four years.

The European Data Protection Supervisor will check that the personal data-processing activities of the management authority are carried out in accordance with this regulation. S/he will also ensure that an audit of the personal data-processing activities is carried out at least every four years. A report of this audit will be sent to the European Parliament, the Council, the management authority, the Commission and the national supervisory authorities.

The national supervisory authorities and the European Data Protection Supervisor cooperate actively. They exchange relevant information, assist one another and meet at least twice a year.

Final provisions

The regulation will apply to the Member States participating in the current Schengen Information System (SIS 1+) from the date to be set by the Council (acting by unanimity of its members representing the governments of the Member States participating in SIS 1+) once all necessary technical preparations for SIS II have been completed at central and Member State level and once all implementing measures have been adopted. Precise information on this matter is given in Article 55 of the regulation and in the legal instruments governing migration from SIS 1+ to SIS II.

Three years after the SIS II is brought into operation, and then every four years, the Commission will produce an overall evaluation of the Central SIS II and the bilateral and multilateral exchanges of supplementary information between Member States. It will transmit the evaluation to the European Parliament and the Council.

Key terms used in the act
  • Alert: a set of data entered in SIS II allowing the competent authorities to identify a person with a view to taking specific action.
  • Member States: EU countries and associated countries participating in the Schengen area. The United Kingdom and Ireland are not participating in aspects of SIS II falling under this regulation.
  • Supplementary information: information not stored in SIS II, but connected to SIS II alerts, which is to be exchanged, in order to allow Member States to consult or inform each other in the following cases: when entering an alert, following a hit in order to allow the appropriate action to be taken, when the required action cannot be taken, when dealing with the quality of SIS II data, when dealing with the compatibility and priority of alerts, when dealing with the right of access.
  • Additional data: data stored in SIS II and connected with SIS II alerts, which are to be made immediately available to the competent authorities of a Member State where a person in relation to whom data has been entered in SIS II is located as a result of searches made there.
  • Personal data: any information relating to an identified or identifiable natural person.
  • Processing of personal data: any operation or set of operations, which is performed upon personal data, whether or not by automatic means, such as: collection, recording, organisation, storage, adaptation or alteration, retrieval, consultation, use, disclosure by transmission, dissemination or otherwise making available, alignment or combination, blocking, erasure or destruction.

References

Act Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
Regulation No 1987/2006/EC

17.1.2007

OJ L 381 of 28.12.2006

Related Acts

Commission Decision 2010/261/EU of 4 May 2010 on the Security Plan for Central SIS II and the Communication Infrastructure [Official Journal L 112 of 5.5.2010].
This decision provides for the organisation of the security of the Central SIS II and its communication infrastructure, and establishes a security plan for both. The purpose is to ensure protection against any threats to their availability, integrity and confidentiality. The Commission is responsible for implementing and monitoring the security measures for the communication infrastructure and, during the transitional period, for the Central SIS II. Once the management authority becomes operational, it must adopt its own security plan for the Central SIS II.
For monitoring the implementation of the security measures, the Commission designates a System Security Officer. A Local Security Officer is designated for the Central SIS II and for the communication infrastructure. They are responsible for implementing and monitoring the security measures and procedures in the principal CS-SIS, including the backup CS-SIS, and in the communication infrastructure respectively.
The System Security Officer, in cooperation with the Local Security Officers, prepares a security policy that provides detailed measures and procedures for protecting the Central SIS II and the communication infrastructure. Among others, the policy provides measures for controlling:

  • access to data processing facilities;
  • removable media containing data and any other important assets;
  • storage of data;
  • passwords;
  • access to SIS II hardware and software;
  • communications through the communication infrastructure.

It also lays down security measures in relation to human resources, defining for example the functions and responsibilities of staff that have access to the Central SIS II.

Commission Decision 2008/333/EC of 4 March 2008 adopting the SIRENE Manual and other implementing measures for the second generation Schengen Information System (SIS II) [Official Journal L 123 of 08.05.2008].
The alerts in SIS II will contain a set of data that is absolutely necessary for identification of a person or object sought. In cases where the future end-users (officers from the competent national authorities) need to take action after obtaining a matching alert, they will require supplementary information on this alert (information that will not be contained in SIS II, but that will be connected to SIS II alerts).
National offices known as SIRENE Bureaux (Supplementary Information Request at the National Entries) have been set up in all Schengen countries to assist with obtaining supplementary information for SIS by acting as the contact points between a Member State creating an alert and one achieving the match. The same offices will be used for SIS II.
The SIRENE Manual is a set of instructions indicating both the general and specific procedures that competent authorities will have to follow for exchanging supplementary information on the following categories of alerts:

  • alerts for refusal of entry or stay (first pillar);
  • alerts for arrest for surrender or extradition purposes (this and the following categories fall under the third pillar);
  • alerts on missing persons;
  • alerts sought for a judicial procedure;
  • alerts for discreet and specific checks;
  • alerts on objects for seizure or use as evidence.

The purpose will be to assure communication among Member States, in particular when entering an alert, acting on an alert, handling multiple alerts, and dealing with the quality of SIS II data or with rights of access.
The implementing measures cover SIS II aspects that, due to their technical nature, level of detail and need for regular updating, are not covered exhaustively by the SIS II legal instruments.
As is the case for other instruments related to SIS II, there are two legal instruments (Commission decisions) for the SIRENE Manual and implementing measures: one for the first pillar (Annex of Decision 2008/333/JHA) and one for the third pillar (Annex of Decision 2008/334/JHA). The Annexes to both decisions are identical.