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Immigration: a Threat or a Solution? Latvian Case Anitra Plūme, Acting Head of Foreigners Service Department, Office of Citizenship and Migration Affairs.

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Presentation on theme: "Immigration: a Threat or a Solution? Latvian Case Anitra Plūme, Acting Head of Foreigners Service Department, Office of Citizenship and Migration Affairs."— Presentation transcript:

1 Immigration: a Threat or a Solution? Latvian Case Anitra Plūme, Acting Head of Foreigners Service Department, Office of Citizenship and Migration Affairs Warsaw, 24th April, 2008

2 Some facts: Total number of inhabitants of Latvia in – Population by nationality: Latvia (citizens) – Estonia – 906 Latvia (non-citizens) – Germany Russia – 29182USA Lithuania – 3392Moldova Ukraine – 3063 Other Belorussia

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4 Migration flows in Latvia in (thousands) ImmigrationEmigrationBalance

5 Migration after 1991  Department of Migration Affairs was established in 19th April 1991;  Number of annual immigration rapidly decreased and migration balance in 1991 – 1995 was negative:  First national legislative acts in the area of migration were adopted and among them – the most important: “Law on Entry and Residence of Foreign Citizens and Stateless Persons into the Republic of Latvia” 9th June 1992.

6 WHAT HAPPENS NOW?

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10 The Main Challenge in the field of migration in Latvia: lack of labour force pressure of employers → intergovernmental working group (July 2006) → “Concept of Migration Policy in the Context of Employment” (submitted in the Cabinet of Ministers – May 2007)

11 “Concept of Migration Policy in the Context of Employment”:  Reduced state duty for issuance of a residence and work permit;  “One-stop agency” for obtaining a residence and work permit;  Fast track procedure in cases if there has been substantial lack of labour force detected in certain areas of employment

12 Positive aspects of simplified labour migration policy: - Possibility to react flexibly to the changes in labour market; - Luck of labour force does not pose a threat to the economical development; - It is possible to maintain a competitiveness in the international market in a short-time period; - Growth of salaries corresponds to the growth of productivity; - Possibility to attract more highly-qualified workers.

13 Negative aspects of simplified labour migration policy: - Does not stimulate return of Latvian citizens who work in other EU countries; - Social problems in case of unemployment; - Negative impact on development of internal labour market; - Employers might slow down improvements in areas of social guaranties, employment conditions and research&development.

14 Problems of introduction of new migration policy: -migration – politically sensitive question in Latvia (historical experience); -xenofobic attitude of native population; -lack of integration policy.

15 Thank you for your attention! Contacts: phone: Čiekurkalna 1.līnija 1, Rīga, LV-1026


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