The European Parliament’s chief negotiator on the Dublin regulation has warned that member states’ plans for a new system would make compromise very difficult. MEP Cecilia Wikström (ALDE, SE) was referring to a proposal tabled by Estonia (which holds the rotating presidency of the Council of the European Union) on November 29.

Estonia’s proposal is aimed at reforming the way in which the EU distributes asylum seekers among countries.

“I welcome the work of the Estonian presidency in attempting to reach a common position in the Council on the Dublin regulation,” said Wikström. “The proposed system however is very far from what could be an acceptable solution for the European Parliament. If the Council were to agree on such a position it would make negotiations between the co-legislators very difficult.”

According to Wikström, Estonia’s proposal, which is currently before the Council, would perpetuate the current failed ad hoc responses of the EU to the migration crisis, instead of building a permanent system which could work both in times of normal and high pressures.

“I would urge member states to carefully study the position of the European Parliament, adopted with a very large majority. The Parliament will be a constructive and ambitious partner in the legislative process, but we will not accept to repeat the mistakes of the past.”

While EU member states have yet to agree on a common position, there is hope that they will reach an agreement during the first half of 2018. After that, the inter-institutional talks in view of reaching a final compromise will begin.

The Maltese and Estonian presidencies have been sounding out member states on their views on a new asylum system.