A new EU report published on Wednesday 8th February has given a great boost to the RSA and its work in the area of Migration. The report recently published by EU employment commissioner Vladimir Spidla, provides evidence to suggest that the free movement of workers from the 10 accession countries will benefit the economies of the wealthier EU countries. Spidla's findings show that immigrants from these eastern European countries have similar, if not higher employment rates, than nationals of those countries who have allowed them free access to work. These workers also tend to fill vital gaps in the labor market, such as that of construction. Furthermore, the report reveals that migration flow has naturally been somewhat limited, and removing migration barriers enable governments to better manage and direct such workers. This is important and timely information from a report designed specifically to encourage important "Old Europe" countries such as France and Germany to lift the current restrictions they place on such immigrants. The issue has received significant media attention, including articles in the Financial Times and The Guardian; as 12 EU countries have until May 1st 2006 to decide whether to join Britain, Sweden and Ireland in lifting restrictions on immigrants from the 10 accession countries.
In November 2005 the RSA Migration Commission launched a new report: 'Migration: a welcome opportunity - a new way forward from the RSA Migration Commission' as part of the RSA Manifesto Challenge 'Advancing Global Citizenship'. More information on the RSA Migration Project is available online.