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EU expecting three million refugees by 2017

Many EU media reported that according to a working hypothesis published by the Juncker Commission on Thursday (5/11/17), Europe must prepare for the arrival of three million asylum seekers by 2017. At the very least there will be a million asylum seekers in 2015, mostly from Syria. The trend will continue in 2016, according to Brussels: 1.5 million arrivals, before a hoped decrease in 2017, when 500,000 refugees will come.

In two years, Europe’s population could increase by 0.4% due to the influx of refugees, writes Speaking in Frankfurt on the occasion of his one year anniversary at the helm of the European Commission, Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker raised the issue of a common coastguard in the Aegean jointly operated by Greece and Turkey and supported the maintenance of open borders in the interior of the European Union, stressing that in order for this to be plausible, the external borders of the EU must be better controlled. reports that Mr Juncker also criticised some eastern European countries for refusing to welcome refugees. Meanwhile, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and European Parliament President Martin Schulz visited Lesbos, the Greek island which received the bulk of arrivals and where aid groups condemned living conditions for refugees as awful.

In Germany, media mainly focus on the solutions to the refugee crisis at a European and international level. SZ reports that Angela Merkel demands a new European asylum system, as the Dublin III Regulation shows weaknesses. She also suggests the EU needs to collaborate with those countries from which the refugees come by boat, which is why cooperation with Turkey is “essential.” In an interview with Passauer Neue Presse Chief of Staff of the Federal Chancellery Peter Altmaier underlines that people who are not entitled to asylum must be sent back as soon as possible.

At the national level, ZDF reports that despite the dispute between the governing parties CDU, CSU and SPD, the Grand Coalition has agreed to new regulations regarding refugees: there will be three to five new reception centres for better registration and improved asylum processes in Germany. In the UK, editorials in the Daily Mail, Daily Express and The Sun all discuss the deepening crisis, and all blame the EU and politicians for failing to take adequate action.

The Express says that “politicians have utterly failed in their pitiful attempts to craft a response” while The Sun and the Daily Mail both warn David Cameron that the deepening crisis shows that he must do more than deliver some “minor tinkering” when he concludes his negotiations with the EU.

As an answer to the migrant crisis, European Council President Donald Tusk has today called for another EU summit on the migrant crisis, on Thursday 12 November in Malta with some African leaders to discuss measures aiming to stop the migrant influx. Carlo Lania points out in an article in Manifesto that the goal is to launch a trust fund worth €1.5 billion to finance extraordinary measures to face the immigration emergency.

Lastly, most EU media report that the European Commission stressed the positive impact of migration. Indeed, according to European Commissioner for Economic Affairs Pierre Moscovici, this massive arrival of refugees could be slightly beneficial for EU member state economies, with an average output growth of 0.2%.

In a commentary in Libero, Francesco Borgonovo criticises the European Commission, pointing out that such an invasion is not sustainable, and member states are making major efforts to handle a very difficult situation which will have no impact on Europe’s economy or growth.




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