Another 25 million people get full access to the EU

How many will come to the UK for 'family re-unification'?

Montage © Facts4EU.Org 2024

Facts4EU.Org looks at the two new Schengen members and the implications for the UK

As the number of illegal migrants into the UK break all records since they started in 2018, on 31 March 2024 another 25.5 million people were granted full access to the EU. Bulgaria and Romania finally became full EU Schengen members, despite all the negative reports they have received from the EU Commission.

The Schengen rules now apply in both Member States and visas and controls at the internal air and sea borders have all been lifted.

In practice, massive numbers from both countries had already departed for the UK since both countries joined and while the UK was still an EU member country. Now it will be much easier for the remainder to do so, if they choose.

Implications for the United Kingdom

Under the agreement made with the EU by Theresa May, there have been settlement applications from 6.2 million people from the EU. Six million people have obtained a grant of UK settlement status through the scheme.

They keep on coming. Last year there were a further 417,000 visas issued by the Home Office under the ‘EU Settlement Scheme’.

Brexit Facts4EU.Org Summary

Romanians and Bulgarians in the UK to date

(As at end-Dec 2023)

  • Romanians : 1,222,130
  • Bulgarians : 342,960
  • Total : 1,565,090
  • Total from EU granted settlement : 5,979,730

[Source: Official UK Home Office statistics as at end-Dec 2023.]

© Brexit Facts4EU.Org 2024 - click to enlarge

Together, these two countries – two of the poorest in the EU - represent 26.2% of the total number of UK visas issued to EU27 citizens so far.

On Monday the floodgates opened wider

Statement by the President of the EU Commission, Ursula von der Leyen last Saturday

“Tomorrow marks an important day: Bulgaria and Romania join the Schengen family. I welcome the lifting of internal air and sea border checks. This is a great success for both countries. And a historic moment for the Schengen area - the largest area of free movement in the world. Together, we are building a stronger, more united Europe for all our citizens.”

- Ursula von der Leyen, 30 Mar 2024

Given that the entire Schengen project is completely broken, as we have outlined in many reports (see below), this was an extraordinary statement from the EU Commission President.

What it does mean, however, is that the traffic of people from Romania and Bulgairia into the rest of the EU will now be a great deal easier. ‘Family re-unification’ into the UK which we have long warned about will therefore become much easier.

Do you believe in “Free Movement”? Rejoiners do, but the EU27 don't any more

The near total disintegration of the EU's flagship Schengen 'open borders' zone proves nations need borders.

© Brexit Facts4EU.Org 2024 - click to enlarge

In August last year we published a map of how the Schengen is supposed to look, versus the reality.

Brexit Facts4EU.Org Summary

How the EU ideologues' fantasies have hit the hard borders of reality

The EU's Schengen Zone fantasy
This is our map of how the EU presents the Schengen Zone

The EU's Schengen Zone in reality
And this has been the reality, based on the actions of EU countries

© Brexit Facts4EU.Org - click to enlarge

© Brexit Facts4EU.Org - click to enlarge

Which countries are in the EU’s Schengen Zone?

Ireland is now the only country to have an opt-out, which it gained by virtue of the United Kingdom opting out. Of the remaining 26 member states, all 26 are now full Schengen members. In addition, the four EFTA states of Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland also participate in Schengen.

The Schengen code is a fundamental part of one of the EU’s “Four Freedoms”, as it involves free movement.

Maps created by the Facts4EU.Org team, using

At that time (Aug 2023) our research showed there had been 368 official breakages of the EU’s Schengen Zone in the previous 17 years. Naturally it was the French who were the first to do so.

This will not stop a renewed exodus of Romanians and Bulgarians from entering the rest of the EU without the need for visas. Typically these are likely to be women and children.


Immigration – whether legal or illegal – has become a major topic across the United Kingdom. This is an issue which concerns the majority of voters outside the Westminster Bubble.

All readers are well aware that the number of both legal and illegal migrants has broken all records, despite Rishi Sunak’s pledges. From what we can gather from statements from Labour on the subject, the problem is only likely to get worse if they come to power, as seems increasingly likely.

Our report merely highlights that the problem is likely to get worse not better. If you would like us to continue using our influence in Westminster to address this critical issue, please support us today.

We must get reports like this out there

Reports like the one above take far longer to research, write and produce than many people realise. If they were easy, readers would see other organisations also producing these daily. However, there’s little point in the Facts4EU.Org team working long hours, seven days-a-week, if we lack the resources to promote them effectively – to the public, to MPs, and to the media. This is where you come in, dear reader.

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[ Sources: EU Commission | Home Office ] Politicians and journalists can contact us for details, as ever.

Brexit Facts4EU.Org, Fri 05 Apr 2024

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