The Hague – ESI workshop on migration diplomacy: Exploring solutions for the EU and its neighbours

23 March 2023
Photo: ESI
Photo: ESI

ESI's Gerald Knaus participated in a series of meetings and led a workshop at the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The purpose of his visit was to share ESI's work on migration diplomacy and to discuss possible solutions for the migration challenges facing the EU and its neighbours.

ESI has developed proposals for bilateral migration agreements between the EU and countries of origin and transit, based on incentives, cooperation and respect for human rights. ESI has also analysed the impact of existing migration deals, such as the EU-Turkey statement, and has provided recommendations for improvement.

During his visit, Gerald met with various MFA directors from the MENA, EU and Africa departments, as well as with the State Secretary on Migration at the Ministry of Justice and Security. He briefed them on ESI's findings and suggestions for enhancing migration partnerships and legal migration pathways.

The highlight of his visit was a workshop with deputy directors general and special envoys from the MFA, the Ministry of Justice and Security, and the Ministry of Employment and Social Affairs. The workshop focused on exploring concrete options for cooperation with countries of origin and transit, such as Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, Libya, Egypt, Turkey, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. Gerald presented ESI's vision for a new European migration diplomacy that would reduce irregular migration, increase returns, protect refugees, and offer legal opportunities for labour migration.

Gerald also met with Eric van der Burg, State Secretary for Justice and Security: