Frontex was established by EU Regulation 2004/2007. As the importance and the involvement of the Agency grew, limits to the initial mandate were identified, including too heavy a reliance on Member States' technical contributions and the need for stronger human rights safeguards, especially with respect to operations at sea. Regulation 2004/2007 was therefore amended first by Regulation 863/2007 and then by Regulation 1168/2011.
Frontex's legal basis was updated once more with Regulation (EU) 2016/1624, re-launching the agency as the European Border and Coast Guard Agency (EBCGA). In 2019 the regulation was recast and the agency is now governed by Regulation (EU) 2019/1896.
Note that the European Court of Justice annulled the Council Decision supplementing the Schengen Borders Code in 2012 (See Judgement), which was replaced by the Regulation on surveillance of the external sea borders 656/2014 in May 2014.
In 2011, Frontex's founding legislation was amended to include greater powers regarding joint operations, technical equipment, risk analysis and research and development.
Quite some time after the European Border Surveillance System was put into use, legislation was approved to regulate its operations.
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