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Ambassador Trombetta speaks at post-Brexit hearing with Italian parliament’s Schengen committee



Ambassador Trombetta speaks at post-Brexit hearing with Italian parliament’s Schengen committee

The hearing covered movement of citizens and workers, police collaboration and management of the pandemic

Ambassador Raffaele Trombetta gave an overview of UK’s new immigration rules at a hearing held by video link on 20 January by the Italian parliamentary committee tasked with monitoring the implementation of the Schengen Agreement.

Speaking to parliamentarians and senators of the cross-chamber body, Ambassador Trombetta explained that the rules on residence, immigration and entry into the UK are now subject to a new system of processing, management and enforcement.

He noted that Italians wishing to move to the UK to work or study now have to obtain a visa and are subject to immigration laws that do not distinguish between European citizens and those of other nationalities. EU citizens can, however, spend up to 180 days in a year in the UK as tourists without a visa.

He then gave an overview of the number of Italians living in the UK, reporting the latest figures available for those registered with the AIRE (the register of Italians residing abroad) and the EU Settlement Scheme: approximately 449,000 and 380,000 respectively.

With regard to the cooperation agreement signed in December between British and European police, the ambassador said that operational information is being exchanged but that there are fewer obligations than previously and no guarantee of information exchange in real time.

He concluded by discussing the management of the first stage of the pandemic, saying that approximately 30,000 Italians had been repatriated from the UK with the help of a task force set up by the embassy and consulates in the country.

Links (in Italian):

- Video of the hearing

- La Repubblica article

- The embassy’s dedicated Brexit page