Exploring legal pathways to fulfil labour needs: EMN Inform


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One of the key pillars of the new Pact on Migration and Asylum is developing legal pathways to Europe. Such new pathways
are seen as an important instrument not only in the context of labour migration, skills matching and addressing labour shortages but also in their potential to contribute to reducing irregular migration, which oen leads to undeclared work and labour
exploitation in the EU.

The Pact foresees a reinforced and more comprehensive approach of cooperation with key partner countries on international mobility and migration in the form of Talent Partnerships. These will provide a comprehensive EU policy framework for cooperation with third countries, to better match labour and skills needs in
the EU, as well as forming part of the EU’s toolbox for engaging partner countries strategically on migration.

Another avenue for legal migration envisaged by the Pact are complementary pathways which are programmes and initiatives that facilitate access to existing legal avenues to the EU for those in need of international protection, taking into account their specific circumstances. According to UNHCR, complementary pathways are safe and regulated avenues that complement rather than substitute refugee resettlement.

This inform aims to explore Member States’ experiences with new legal pathways in these two above-mentioned areas, namely Talent Partnerships and complementary work-related pathways for those in need of international protection. With regard to Talent Partnerships, the inform explores the sectors and nationalities targeted in existing or planned partnerships with third countries, including temporary and longterm migration, as well as circular migration. It also looks into how skills shortages that cannot be filled with the national and legally staying migrant workers already available in EU countries are taken into account in the development of such measures. Also, the mechanisms of involving employers and national employment authorities are addressed. With regard to complementary pathways, the inform specifically focuses on work-related complementary pathways for persons in need of international protection.

Author(s):European Migration Network
Publisher:Directorate General Migration and Home Affairs, European Commission
Publication Date:21 Jul 2021
Geographic Focus:EU
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