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Annual Policy Report on Migration and Asylum 2011: Ireland

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The annual European Migration Network policy reports examine the main trends and policy development in the area of migration and asylum at EU Member State level. This eight annual policy analysis report on Ireland focuses on the period from January to December 2011. Some important developments included:-

  • The 29th Government of Ireland formed in March 2011 with Alan Shatter T.D. appointed Minister for Justice, Equality and Defence.
  • The Immigration, Residence and Protection Bill 2010 lapsed with the dissolution of the 30th Dáil (parliament) on 1 February 2011.
  • The Department of Justice and Equality published a Strategy Statement 2011-2014 in which they committed to focusing on providing ‘an immigration system with appropriate policies which meets the needs of a changing society and which facilitates to the greatest extent possible national economic development’ and to promote ‘equality and integration in Irish society in order to further economic growth, social inclusion and fairness’.
  • Initial releases from the 2011 Census showed that the number of Irish residents born outside Ireland continues to increase and stood at 766,770 in 2011, accounting for 17 per cent of the population. The number of non-Irish nationals, increased by 124,624 persons, or 30 per cent, to 544,357.
  • A new immigration regime for international students took effect from 1 January 2011.
  • The Female Genital Mutilation Bill 2011 was introduced in January 2011.
  • In May 2011 the Government announced Ireland’s first formal visa waiver programme.
  • The Civil Law (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2011 was signed into law in August 2011 and provides for a number of amendments to immigration and citizenship law.
  • Eleven pieces of secondary legislation relating to immigration and international protection were introduced during 2011.
  • During 2011, Ireland had its human rights record reviewed under the United Nations Universal Periodic Review (UPR) procedure, with a published report in October 2011.
  • A series of changes to the citizenship application process in Ireland were introduced in 2011.
  • Ireland and the UK signed a joint agreement reinforcing the Common Travel Area (CTA) between both countries and providing a ‘platform for greater cooperation on immigration matters.
Author: Corona Joyce
Publisher: Economic and Social Research Institute
Date of Publication: 30 November 2012
Geographical focus: Ireland
ISBN: 978 0 7070 0340 5

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