OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers

This series is designed to make available to a wider readership selected labour market, social policy and migration studies prepared for use within the OECD. Authorship is usually collective, but principal writers are named. The papers are generally available only in their original language - English or French - with a summary in the other.

English, French

The European Union's External Labour Migration Policy; Rationale, Objectives, Approaches and Results, 1999-2014

This paper is part of the joint project between the Directorate General for Migration and Home Affairs of the European Commission and the OECD’s Directorate for Employment, Labour and Social Affairs on “Review of Labour Migration Policy in Europe”. This document has been produced with the financial assistance of the European Union. The views expressed herein can in no way be taken to reflect the official opinion of the European Union. Grant: HOME/2013/EIFX/CA/002 / 30-CE-0615920/00-38 (DI130895) A previous version of this paper (DELSA/ELSA/MI(2015)2) was presented and discussed at the OECD Working Party on Migration in June 2015. This paper presents an overview and analysis of the policy development at the EU level regarding external labour migration (ELM). It reviews the shift in ELM policy at the EU level by examining documents and debates. It looks at the treatment of ELM, setting out from the Amsterdam Treaty and then follows the development up to the present, paying close attention to the evolving rational for increasing ELM. The difference between the horizontal approach and the sectoral approach is explained. The major ELM Directives under the sectoral approach are presented and discussed in terms of how they were negotiated and how they fit into the overall ELM policy strategy. The document concludes by identifying current political challenges for expanding the EU approach beyond its present form.


JEL: K37: Law and Economics / Other Substantive Areas of Law / Immigration Law; N44: Economic History / Government, War, Law, International Relations, and Regulation / Economic History: Government, War, Law, International Relations, and Regulation: Europe: 1913-; F22: International Economics / International Factor Movements and International Business / International Migration
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