EU proposes youth mobility agreement with UK to allow young people to travel, work and live between the two areas

April 19, 2024 by No Comments

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Commission recommended Thursday to open talks with the U.K. that would authorize young people to freely travel, work and learn in both regions post-Brexit — Britain’s withdrawal from the EU four years ago.After the 2016 U.K. departure, the EU says mobility between the regions has suffered. “This situation has particularly affected the possibilities for you to live across the Channel and capitalize on youth, cultural, educational, research and training exchange programs,” the Commission said.When the U.K. was within the political and economic bloc, its people could live and work in the EU and vice versa. The pact the EU’s executive arm proposed would enable EU and U.K. residents aged 18 to 30 to reside in the host country up to four years.The arrangement would also extend similar treatment to EU and U.K. university students regarding tuition costs. Currently most EU students who want to study in the U.K. must pay international tuition fees. The Commission notes these range from 11,400 to 38,000 pounds ($14,200-$47,300) yearly and significantly deter EU students who typically do not pay such high fees within the bloc.EU member states will debate the Commission’s proposal and must approve it before the executive branch can initiate talks with the U.K.”We have fruitful Youth Mobility Schemes with 13 countries, including Australia and New Zealand, and remain willing to establish them with our international allies, including EU member states,” the British government said in a statement.The U.K. has its own Youth Mobility Scheme, which it has extended to some EU member states. The Commission believes the U.K. plan is less comprehensive than its proposed agreement.”Our agreements present a valuable pathway for cultural exchanges provided partner countries are also ready to provide similar opportunities for young British citizens,” the British government added.