The European Union is offering simplified visa procedures and increased economic aid to Tunisia and Egypt in exchange for smoother deportations of unwanted African migrants.
Two senior officials in Brussels said on Monday that the bloc has agreed steps to curb arrivals form Libya, the main crossing point for African migrants trying to reach Europe, and is now looking at its neighbours.
According to officials, EU is working on establishing dialogue that would look into socio -economic and security issues that would benefit not only migrants but more so Egyptians.
Egypt’s foreign minister is expected in Brussels for a meeting in March and this would be the opportune time for the EU and Egypt to agree on how to intensify the cooperation.
Dialogue with Tunisia includes simplifying visa procedures in exchange for a readmission agreement that would make it easier for the EU to deport Tunisians living illegally in Europe, or other nationals arriving from Tunisia.
The EU already has 17 such deals including with Turkey and Pakistan.