Committee on Justice and Home Affairs
Recent estimates of illegal migrants in the EU range between 4.5 and 8 million, with an estimated increase by 350 000 to 500.000 per year:
'At the same time the EU needs to strengthen its relationships with its neighbors and other countries in an effort to manage better migration. “ (Franco Frattini, Vice President of the European Commission, responsible for Freedom, Security and Justice).
With an ever-rising tide of
illegal immigrants at its shores – is the EU a safe heaven for the oppressed
and poor or a closed bulwark? What measures could be contained in a common
European immigration policy at and outside the borders of
The Impact of Illegal Immigration
Few data exist on the impact of illegal immigration on European society, even rough estimations are missing or – if presented – are contradictory. Generally, illegal immigrants are primarily perceived as a social threat. This perception could have many reasons, for example, feelings of social and residential insecurity, fear of a higher crime rate, xenophobic tendencies, etc. but, as mentioned previously, there is a lack of evidence to support such theories.
perception is the awareness of this kind of immigrant group as being vulnerable.
Here, discussions about the costs of such immigration generally abound, but a
variety of actors are also articulating the problem of possible care and aid options.
On the one hand, it is a problem of security and immigration policy, and, on the
other hand, it is a problem of social care and human rights. With regard to
of immigrants was €29 million. With regard to the economic situation in the Member States, there is indeed evidence of wage dumping (i.e. paying illegal immigrants less than the wage paid to legal workers), which is partly even debated with regard to immigration groups themselves, so that one immigration group is substituted by the other, supplying labour at lower
wages. However, there is almost no research on this, although there are some case studies on economic cost benefit analysis. The costs and benefits ratio is dependent on cycles and fluctuations of immigrants and on the differentiation of various economic niches and immigration groups. One can indeed speak of the large degree of taxes lost through illegal work and of
education spending. But as mentioned above, the educational integration of children with illegal residence background is rather low in most Member States. This has an impact on employment and the problems of achieving an economic balance in the national economy with regard to filling niches and occupations in demand.
immigration has become an important topic in
The degree of prevention and
control of illegal third-country immigrants differs between Member States, with
Member States have developed their frameworks and invested in checks and
controls. These controls include external state actions, such as the imposition of visas and tighter border controls, domestic actions with residence and work permits, and with co-operative efforts within the Member States. Furthermore, data systems and IT installations have been developed and used in most Member States. There are also bilateral co-operations regarding border data and border controls.
bilateral and multilateral treaties have been improving cooperation with the
countries of origin and transit. In particular, for
In most Member States, a central security issue relates to human trafficking and smuggling. Here, co-operative measures on various levels have been implemented.
conclusion, however, it must be affirmed that the situation in each
Despite the above-mentioned international agreements guaranteeing basic rights of illegal immigrants, national policies in favour of illegal immigrants are nearly nonexistent, although in some Member States there are, for example, restrictions on controls in the area of educational services.
The social situation of
illegal immigrants is precarious, though it differs according to the region and
immigrants work under rather precarious conditions or are at least under threat
of being discovered, blackmailed, or eventually removed from the
impact of illegal immigration on a particular
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