The paper identifies a policy inconsistency between the EU’s asylum and the EU’s labour migration policies and makes a call for stronger convergence. The analysis starts off by setting out the EU’s current and future economic challenges with a view to its ageing population and low fertility rates, which displays the EU’s need for migrants. Two trends can be observed: The lacking success of Europe’s highly-skilled regime, ie the Blue Card scheme, casts doubts on the suitability of the EU’s labour migration policy and its ability to meet the EU’s labour market’s needs this way. Labour market access for people that come to the EU to seek asylum on the other hand is subject to quite a number of restrictions. The lack of coordination seems short-sighted. In an attempt to advocate for stronger coherence the paper sets out the rights to access the EU labour market of those who come to the EU as asylum seekers in detail and explores reform potential where these rights can be expanded consistent with the EU’s labour market needs. It looks at EU law in general and refers to Germany as an implementation example.

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European Journal of Migration and Law
Rotterdam Institute of Law and Economics

Weber, F. (2016). Labour market access for asylum seekers and refugees under the Common European Asylum System. European Journal of Migration and Law, 18(1), 34–64. doi:10.1163/15718166-12342089