History of Illegal Immigration in the Western Balkans Associated with Socio-Economic and Political Developments in the Region
AbstractIllegal immigration from the Western Balkans towards EU countries now is considered the number one concern for the EU institutions. This phenomenon has increased significantly in late 2014 and during 2015. The key driving factor towards emigration is primarily the high level of unemployment, and unstable economic situation of these countries. The low level of democracy, as well as conflicting policies, is another important factor. Some EU countries, such as Germany, Italy and Greece are directly confronted with this phenomenon, which has created substantial costs for its management, not only in humanitarian terms. Italy and Greece are affected more by political emigration, immigrants coming from conflict areas. Germany is affected by migration from countries of the Western Balkans, in particular Kosovo and Albania. A study of immigrant`s preferences argues that about 34% of them select Germany as the primary destination for a better economic future. The paper tries to argue that policies that lead to the coordination of economic cooperation are concrete steps towards deepening European integration. Deepening the integration and enlargement of the EU cannot be threatened by a wave of illegal immigrants from the Western Balkans; on the contrary, these policies will lead to the reduction of this phenomenon.
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