About 69% of Europeans believe that integration measures are “a necessary investment in the long-run” and a similar proportion view integration “as a two-way process for both migrants and host societies”. These are the results from a special Eurobarometer survey on the integration of migrants in the EU published recently.
Respondents generally “agree on the main factors that may facilitate or prevent integration”, as well as on policy measures supporting it, including language courses upon arrival, mandatory integration programmes, and measures facilitating access to the labour market. 60% of those interviewed have daily interactions with migrants, while 40% have friends or family members who are migrants.
There is also an agreement on the fact that “the EU plays an important role when it comes to integration, with a particular added value for sharing best practices, promoting cooperation between all actors involved, and financial support”.
The survey shows that only 37% of Europeans think they are “well informed about migration and integration” and only a few know the figures. They tend to “overestimate the number of non-EU migrants” – the “actual proportion” of non–EU migrants is “half or less than half of their estimated share”. According to more than 34% of Europeans, migrants are more than 12% of the population; 29% have no idea of the figures. Non-EU citizens today are 7% of the EU’s population.
According to Eurostat, the European Union gave asylum to more than half a million refugees in 2017, with Germany taking in more than 60 per cent.
The number was still down by about a quarter compared with 2016, and followed a major surge of migration in 2015 which has strained the bloc’s asylum system and caused political wrangling over how to deal with the influx.
Syrian citizens accounted for about a third of successful asylum cases in 2017, Eurostat said, followed by Afghans and Iraqis. On a per capita basis, Germany had the most successful asylum cases in 2017, followed by Austria and Sweden. Slovakia, the Czech Republic and Poland had the fewest successful asylum cases in 2017 on a per capita basis.
Syrians and Eritreans were most likely to get asylum in the EU in 2017, with more than nine in 10 cases being approved, while migrants from Albania and Kosovo were the least likely.