"Forecasting migration between the EU, V4 and Eastern Europe: impact of visa abolition" - inaugurating seminar
On June 11 2013 OSW held a kick-off seminar inaugurating the launch of a new research project co-funded by the International Visegrad Fund and carried out in cooperation with research centres from V4 and the Eastern Partnership states, entitled: Forecasting migration between the EU, V4 and Eastern Europe: impact of visa abolition. The project aims at providing the V4, EU and Eastern European governmental stakeholders as well as expert and scientific community with in-depth study on possible consequences of Schengen visas’ liberalisation for the migration’s dynamics and structure between the EU and Eastern Europe.
The invited speakers and guests were discussing whether visa abolition of EU short-term visas may have a direct impact on migration flows and what are other factors influencing that process. They also touched upon the state of current migration and visa trends between the EU and Eastern Europe as well as political debate over the issue of possible introduction of visa free regime. OSW Director Dr. Olaf Osica emphasized that a new project is purposed to depoliticize the issue of visa liberalization, overcome stereotypes and instead of that attempts to present the estimates of migration flows, the scale of a problem and possible scenarios. Ms. Monika Prus, Director of Migration Policy Department at the Ministry of Interior, expressed belief that the project’s results could be highly beneficial for governmental stakeholders at EU and national levels. Ms. Prus presented the outline of Polish the legal and statistical aspects pertaining to Eastern European immigration to Poland. Mr. Grzegorz Michalski, the Deputy Director of Consular Department at Foreign Ministry emphasized that Polish visa policy is aimed at breaking stereotypes and creation of friendly and secure EU border. He noticed the fact of last year border crossing dynamics exceeding the size it had before Schengen area enlargement.
The plenary session hosted also Dr. Wadim Strielkowski from Charles University in Prague, Ms. Oleksandra Betliy from Ukrainian Institute for Economic Research and Policy Consulting, Ms. Andrei Yeliseyeu of Belarusian Institute for Strategic Studies and Dr. Marta Jaroszewicz, OSW project’s coordinator, and Mr. Rafał Sadowski, OSW senior research fellow. Analysts from Hungary and Moldova also participated.
Partners: Research Centre of the Slovak Foreign Policy Association; Geographic Migration Centre, Charles University, Prague; Hungarian Institute of International Affairs; Institute for Economic Research and Policy Consulting, Kyiv; Belarusian Institute for Strategic Studies; Institute for Development and Social Initiatives (IDIS) „Viitorul”, Chisinau; Centre of Migration Research Foundation, Warsaw.