Demography and migration were the topic of the last Wednesday debate at #FFIR 2019, which was carried out by Marius Ghincea, Fullbright scholar, Ana Maria Luca, Senior Expert at the GlobalFocus Center, Kristof Bender, Vice-President of the European Stability Initiative, and Matthias Lücke, Professor and Senior Researcher at Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
Matthias Lücke, on managing migration:
„There is quite a number of countries from where people are leaving because of security reasons, people who are persecuted. Many of them do not end-up in Europe, they end-up in neighboring countries. There might be 1 million Syrians in Germany, but there are 3 millions in Turkey.
The big question is how do we manage migration and how do we manage it together with the countries of origin.
I would see many opportunities from well-managed migration. It can be a win-win situation.”
Kristof Bender, on the legal framework of migration:
“We should increase the legal provisions in EU regarding migration in order to decrease illegal migration.
On the Greek island where migrants arrive, the situation is a disaster. The conditions for migrants are awful.
In 2018, we had 90,000 people arriving via the Mediterranean. But, we have more than half a million Ukrainians legally migrating in EU in 2018. Not the migration is the problem, but this travel by boat makes it look it illegal.”
Ana-Maria Luca, on migration not being terrorism:
“The main opposition to migration within EU has to do with terrorism. I think this is a mistake because people do not leave their own countries to put a bomb in another country, but because they are looking for a better life. Terrorism has different causes than migration.”
Marius Ghincea, on the populist discourse on migration:
„We have so many political leaders which are framing migration as a security threat. They are saying migrants are coming to steal our way of living, our traditions. We should do more in order to counter-attack this type of approach.
Migration is always linked with economics. You need to have some risks and benefits when you decide to leave your village, your town.”
Matthias Lücke, on who benefits from migration
„Think about migration as an investment decision. The relevant question is not to ask if the emigrants will economically benefit from the migration, it is sure that they will benefit. The relevant question is if the people from the destination country will economically benefit from accepting migrants.
It is important to say that the migration policy is made by the people who the least to benefit from migration. It is made by the destination country.
Migration has to be treated carefully in order to make everyone benefit as much as possible.”
Foto: Daniel Secărescu