Working visit for representatives of the Ministry of Security of BiH to the Federal Foreigners and Asylum Service of the Republic of Austria

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On 13th and 14th of July 2022, Hilfswerk International, in cooperation with the Joint Coordination Platform – JCP, organised an expert visit for representatives of the Working Group for the drafting of the Law on Amendments to the Law on Foreigners of BiH. The working group, made up of representatives of the Ministry of Security of BiH, the Service for Foreigners’ Affairs, the Border Police of BiH, and the Directorate for European Integration (DEI) of BiH, together with representatives of Hilfswerk International, met with members of the Ministry of Interior of the Republic of Austria (BMI) and the Federal Foreign and Asylum Service (BFA).

The theme of the first day of the visit was the exchange of experiences and application of EU directives and regulations, with a particular emphasis on current laws, policies, and practices in both countries relating to asylum and migration issues. Particular attention was paid to processes and procedures concerning the illegal crossing of the border and residence in the country, visas, entry into the country, invitation letters, temporary and permanent residence, and expulsion.

On the second day of the visit, the Working Group visited the EAST Ost Asylum Reception Centre, Traiskirchen, where representatives of the centre presented laws and practices in the establishment and organisation of centres, legal regulations, legal consultation, primary protection, competences, and crisis management.  As part  of the tour of the Centre, they also had the opportunity to learn  about the process of accepting and processing migrants and asylum seekers, thanks to the introduction of the "step by step" protocol.

During the study visit, members of the Working Group became aware of the basic principles of the methodology to be followed by foreigners' law, as well as key issues and areas to be aligned with EU standards.