External Borders Fund (EBF)

Switzerland became involved with retrospective effect from 2009 in the External Borders Fund EBF; the EBF’s funding period ended in 2013 and Switzerland successfully terminated its implementation by the end of 2016. The EBF was part of the EU’s General Programme on Solidarity and Management of Migration Flows.

The EBF was a solidarity fund used in particular to support Schengen countries that bear high costs protecting Schengen external borders because of their extensive land and maritime borders.The aim of the fund was to improve the efficiency of controls and thus the protection of external borders, and to reduce the level of irregular entry. At the same time, the fund was used to facilitate and expedite the procedure for regular entry.

The fund was set up to run from 2007–2013. Switzerland participated as part of its association with Schengen.

Financial resources from the EBF were used to finance projects to enhance the protection and management of Schengen external borders in Member States. The EBF’s overall budget amounted to 1,820 million euros. Switzerland contributed a total of 53.4 million euros into the fund and received 17.6 million euros. Switzerland’s position as a net contributor to the fund is due to the fact that the only external Schengen borders Switzerland has are at its international airports.

With its funds from the EBF, Switzerland co-financed several projects in relation to visas, notably the link to the European Union’s central visa information system (CS-VIS) and a new national visa system. In the area of borders, the fund was used to co-finance new border control systems including the required technical equipment and, the deployment of two Immigration Liaison Officers.

The State Secretariat for Migration was responsible for all aspects of Switzerland’s participation in the fund responsible, as it now is for the ISF Borders.

Last modification 23.04.2021

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