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4 - The Migration Crisis in Europe: The Implications for Trade and Labour in a Globalised Context

from PART I - The European Integration Project And Irregular Migration: Upholding Fundamental Values And Principles

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  12 October 2018

Maria Cudowska
Affiliation:
Faculty of Law, University of Białystok, Poland
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Summary

The land flourished because it was fed from so many sources – because it was nourished by so many cultures and traditions and peoples.

Lyndon B. Johnson

INTRODUCTION

The interface between global policies in economic, social and migration related issues has become a focal point in today's discussion about the migration crisis and the path to a modern and synthetic integration. Hence, it may be appropriate to say that with the necessary governmental support, migration can have the power to drive economic growth and development in both home and host countries. That being stated, international migration and international trade in goods and services both raise questions regarding the effect of trade liberalisation on incentives to migrate across countries, and the effects of international migration on the need for trade liberalisation.

Throughout history there have been various instances of simultaneous trade and immigration liberalisation operations, as well as examples of a complete opposite nature, such as in the United States, wherein trade liberalisation has been coupled with immigration restrictions. The current infiux of migrants into the European Union (EU), followed by the so-called ‘migration crisis’, is not only a challenge for democracy, per se, but also a challenge for several EU institutions in terms of labour and economic policy. Also, as will be discussed in this chapter, the impact of migration on public finances cannot be overlooked in the long run, as this may jeopardise the financial stability of the entire European community.

What is important, however, is that the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries have responded to emergency situations by scaling up public spending to process asylum applications and welcome refugees. In order to support countries of origin and transit, additional funding has also been made available at the EU and national levels alike. Significantly, the labour markets in the EU, the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland markets, will most likely (based on estimates) not suffer from the infiux of refugees. To the contrary, the labour markets of the EU might take in as many as one million new workers by the end of 2016.

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Publisher: Intersentia
Print publication year: 2018

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