Why was the EMN established?
In order to address the need to exchange information on all aspects of migration and to contribute towards the creation of a common asylum and immigration policy, the European Commission was invited to consider the "development of a European system for exchanging information on asylum, migration and countries of origin" by the Laeken European Council in 2001. The result was the European Migration Network, which was first launched in 2003 as a Pilot Project, and later on in 2004 as a Preparatory Action. This stage lasted until the end of 2006. The Thessaloniki European Council (2003) stated that it would welcome the establishment of a European Migration Network and would examine the possibility of setting up a permanent structure in the future. The current Hague Programme has reinforced the need for common analysis, collection, provision, exchange and efficient use of up-to-date information of migratory phenomena, and the EMN represents one means towards reaching this goal.
Following the successful end of the Preparatory Action, the European Commission published a proposal in August 2007 for a Council Decision establishing a legal basis for the EMN. This Council Decision 2008/381/EC was adopted on 14 May 2008.