Working with UNHCR

UNHCR is the UN agency mandated to protect refugees, asylum seekers and stateless persons and safeguard their fundamental rights and well-being. The European Union works in close partnership with UNHCR, supporting and funding UNHCR's operations in the increasingly difficult emergency contexts and protracted situations. Combined, the EU and its Member States are UNHCR's second biggest donor.

At the European level, the EU and UNHCR work closely on migration and asylum matters. The EU and its Member States recognise that asylum is a fundamental right and, in this spirit, have been working together to establish a Common European Asylum System (CEAS). The aim of the Common European Asylum System is to ensure a fair and effective asylum system across all 28 member states. UNHCR contributes to this process. 

Strong two-way communication exists between the EU and UNHCR with regular high-level dialogues taking place in Geneva between the UN High Commissioner for Refugees and the European Union Member States. Three times per year the UNHCR Executive Committee meets to review and discuss UNHCR's operations, global strategies, planning priorities and budget situation. The EU uses this opportunity to deliver strong messages of support, encouragement and guidance on UNHCR operations.


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