Schengen Agreement

Department for Exiting the European Union written question – answered on 16th July 2019.

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Photo of Neil O'Brien Neil O'Brien Conservative, Harborough

To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, what estimate he has made of the number of UK nationals who (a) work in the Schengen area and (b) live in the Schengen area and have less than five years' residency.

Photo of Robin Walker Robin Walker The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union

We estimate that there are around 1 million UK nationals living in the EU. We do not at present hold data on the number of UK nationals who work in the Schengen area, nor the number of those who live in the Schengen area with less than five years’ residency.

The deal we’ve reached will provide EU citizens in the UK and UK nationals in the EU with certainty about their rights going forward. Indeed, the Government has been clear that in any scenario, including no deal, EU citizens and their family members living here by exit day will be able to stay. EU citizens resident in the UK by exit day are able to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme to secure their status. The scheme fully opened on 30 March and over 800,000 applicants have applied. Applications to the scheme are free.

In a no deal, following extensive engagement by the Government, we are pleased that all Member States have now made commitments to protect the rights of UK nationals in the EU and have guaranteed that UK nationals legally resident by exit day will be able to stay. We continue to encourage Member States to fully reciprocate our offer and communicate plans as soon as possible.

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