The European Return Fund
The European Return Fund is one of the four financial instruments of the General Programme on "Solidarity and Management of Migration Flows" which encourages a fair share of responsibilities between Member States arising from the introduction of integrated management of the external borders and from the implementation of common policies on asylum and immigration. The other three Funds are: the European Fund for the Integration of Third Country Nationals, the External Borders Fund and the European Refugee Fund.
The European Return Fund establishes a financial solidarity mechanism to support the efforts of Member States to improve the management of return in all its dimensions through the use of the concept of integrated return management, with a preference to voluntary return and with a view to supporting a fair and effective implementation of common standards on return. The Fund will also support joint return actions including several Member States.
The overall budget of this Fund for 2008-2013 is € 676 million, distributed as follows:
- € 632,9 million distributed among Member States on the basis of objective criteria, i.e. the number of third country nationals subject or having been subject to return measures;
- € 43,1 million (7% of the total annual resources each year as from 2009) directly managed by the Commission and dedicated to Community actions.
Ireland is now inviting proposals for projects to be supported through the European Return Fund in accordance with Ireland's Annual Programme 2012. The closing date for applications is 5 p.m. on Wednesday 31st October 2012.