Legislative proposal on EU Emergency Travel Document circulated for comments

Comments on the draft government proposal may be submitted to the lausuntopalvelu.fi service until 15 August 2023.

The Ministry for Foreign Affairs has prepared a proposal to enact new national legislation on the EU Emergency Travel Document. This law would supplant the emergency travel document provisions in section 41b of the Consular Services Act. The new legislation is intended to take effect in December 2024.

A proposed new Act and amendments to the Consular Services Act would implement the EU directive establishing an EU Emergency Travel Document. The main goal of the directive is to create a safer model for the EU emergency travel document, and to ensure that documents of this kind issued by Member States are similar in form, features and security factors throughout the European Union.

The proposed new Act would comply with the directive by regulating the EU emergency travel document and the conditions and procedure for issuing it in greater detail.

Finland issues EU emergency travel documents to EU citizens in non-EU countries where there is no diplomatic or consular mission representing the Member State of which the EU citizen in question is a citizen. A Finnish citizen in a country outside the EU may correspondingly request an EU emergency travel document from a diplomatic or consular mission representing another Member State if Finland has no such mission of its own in that country.

The EU emergency travel document entitles the bearer to make a single journey home, or to another destination in exceptional cases, if the bearer is unable to use his or her usual travel document, for example because it has been lost or stolen.

EU Member States have been issuing EU emergency travel documents since 1996. Finland issues an average of 80 to 100 EU emergency travel documents annually to EU citizens lacking local diplomatic or consular mission support.