EU’s Schengen area under threat

Temporary border controls have been imposed by many European countries
Flooded with more than one million refugees, several Schengen area member states have imposed border controls (source: macpixxel for GIS)
  • Estimates of long-term economic costs of abandoning the Schengen area vary, but are certain to be disastrously high
  • Loss of Schengen could be a mortal blow to the euro
  • To salvage the control-free zone, leaders in Brussels need to fall back on the EU’s core values

Under combined pressure from migrants and terrorists, the Schengen area – the European Union’s control-free travel zone – could become a thing of the past. Many member states have enacted temporary restrictions at their borders; some have even built razor-wire barriers to stave off perceived threats to their stability and security. The Schengen system, once designed to protect Europeans, is widely questioned. In May 2016, Brussels authorized an extension of such extraordinary measures for another six months. Salvaging the system is still possible, but not certain.

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