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The European Union’s immigration policy: a stalled form of the strategy of conflict?


  • Maurizio Mistri


  • Gabriele Orcalli



More than 10 years after the Amsterdam Treaty, which transferred competences on immigration and asylum matters to common jurisdiction, the EU Commission is asking for a “genuine” European immigration policy. In our view, such a genuine policy must consider the common control of immigration flows, unequivocally rejected by both the Amsterdam and Lisbon Treaty for reasons that are rooted in the political terrain and—in terms of the economic logic—in the difficulty of finding a common immigration model. We consider that the focal point is constituted by whether or not to create side-payments, without which States have no choice but to adopt a national immigration policy. Side-payments, at this stage in the history of the European Union, would be very difficult to determine in the context of immigration policy. The fact that immigration policy is assigned to national governments, rendering compensatory payments impossible, is rooted in the complexity of this politically sensitive issue as well as in the practical difficulty of calculating the positive and negative externalities referred to above. Copyright Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Suggested Citation

  • Maurizio Mistri & Gabriele Orcalli, 2015. "The European Union’s immigration policy: a stalled form of the strategy of conflict?," International Economics and Economic Policy, Springer, vol. 12(2), pages 239-256, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:iecepo:v:12:y:2015:i:2:p:239-256
    DOI: 10.1007/s10368-014-0274-y

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. George J. Borjas, 1995. "The Economic Benefits from Immigration," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(2), pages 3-22, Spring.
    2. Jef Huysmans, 2000. "The European Union and the Securitization of Migration," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 38(5), pages 751-777, December.
    3. Keeney,Ralph L. & Raiffa,Howard, 1993. "Decisions with Multiple Objectives," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521438834, August.
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    More about this item


    Conflict; European Union; Governance; Immigration; F22; F53; J20;

    JEL classification:

    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • F53 - International Economics - - International Relations, National Security, and International Political Economy - - - International Agreements and Observance; International Organizations
    • J20 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - General


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