Migration Challenges in the EU amid the COVID-19 Pandemic: Fostering Solidarity or Threatening the Cohesion?
The article discusses the formation and adaptation of migration policies in the European Union Member States under the impact of COVID-19. Prior to the pandemic, migration was already a very acute issue for the Member States, because the attitudes of each country towards formulating a common migration policy and its further communitarisation were quite different. Not surprisingly, amid the spread of the infection, a phenomenon such as migration has an even greater impact on the development of the entire European regional integration project. Due to the introduction of strict measures against coronavirus, such as social distance standards and states of emergency, most migrant and refugee assistance programs have been suspended indefinitely, with an immediate negative impact on the lives of these people. However, one thing all countries agree on is that migrants contribute greatly to EU life and development, as they constitute 13% of the key workforce. Therefore, new safe working practices need to be adopted. Another key issue under consideration is developing coherent asylum-seeker and refugee policies. These two categories constitute a large part of the Union's migration flows; however, the EU experience in this area has not been very successful. Thus, in the midst of COVID-19, effective migration management becomes even more important. The pandemic stresses the need for better public administration with migrants and refugees in mind. As a consequence, it is not surprising that COVID-19 will have a long-term impact on migration. Basing on the analysis of current developments, the author concludes that although the EU has taken some initiatives to improve the situation of migrants and refugees, it cannot fully guarantee them health protection, decent and stable living conditions, social security and access to the labor market.
Matyukhova E. Migration Challenges in the EU amid the COVID-19 Pandemic: Fostering Solidarity or Threatening the Cohesion?. Analysis & Forecasting. Journal of IMEMO, 2020, no 4, pp. 94-107. https://doi.org/10.20542/afij-2020-4-94-107