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‘We want you! But . . .’ Recruiting Migrants and Encouraging Transnational Migration Through Progressive Inclusion

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The article submits a proposal for outlining the present body of legal norms in the field of European migration and immigration law. To this end, it suggests understanding European migration and integration law as shaped by two principles: the principle of congruence between a state's territory, authority and citizenry and the principle of progressive inclusion. According to the established principle of congruence, the granting of rights to third-country nationals (TCNs) is always geared to the ideal image that the persons permanently living on a territory are—in reality—part of the citizenry of that state and subject to the state's authority. According to the more recent principle of progressive inclusion, TCNs are to be gradually included into the host country's society by approximating their rights progressively to the rights of citizens. There are potential tensions between the two principles, which can be explained by the diverging philosophical and political concerns that they follow and the conceptions of migration that each uses. The article then goes on to explore the influence of both principles in current European migration and integration law. It brings forward the argument that current European migration and integration law is structured as much by the ‘older’ principle of congruence as by the principle of progressive inclusion. This assumption will be illustrated by the examples of the Long-term Residents Directive (LTR Directive). Important provisions of the proposal for a framework directive intended to guarantee TCNs' equal treatment with EU citizens in social matters (Draft Framework Directive) and the directive on the highly skilled migrant workers (Blue Card Directive) will also be taken into account. Against the background of the highly contested legal field of migration and integration law, using the language of principles provides a useful tool not only for better grasping the current shape of this legal field, but even more for the legal discourse on the future development of European migration and integration law.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2009-11-01

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