Migration is a complex issue. Often, when we talk about migration, nuances are put to one side; no distinction is made between internal migration within the European Union (from Poland or Romania to Britain or France, for example), immigration into the European Union from outside, temporary migration, legal migration, illegal migration, asylum seekers and refugees, and so on.

It’s difficult to know what to think. It doesn’t help that there are politicians who clearly want to exploit public fears and prejudices over migration. How can we know what to believe? Some simplification of the issues are perhaps inevitable, in order to make the topic accessible in the first place. So, let’s start from first principles: overall, do we benefit from migration to Europe?

What do our readers think? We had a comment from Ironworker who says he’s confused by the debate over immigration. How should we think about migration?

Is migration good or bad for Europe? We asked Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) from all sides of the political spectrum to stake out their positions on this question, and it’s up to YOU to vote for the policies you favour. See what the different MEPs have to say, then vote at the bottom of this debate for the one you most agree with! Take part in the vote below and tell us who you support in the European Parliament!

Radical Left
Stelios Kouloglou (GUE-NGL), Member of the European Parliament:

Greens
Judith Sargentini (Group of the Greens), Member of the European Parliament:

Migration is there. We don’t question whether the sun comes up every morning and goes down again at night. I think the problem with the debate around migration is that we’re not recognising it’s there and it’s simply there to stay. The policies that the European Member States put forward try to actually stop people coming to Europe, but they will not succeed in that and therefore we’re not dealing with it in a rational way. I don’t think we need to look at this in terms of ‘good’ or ‘bad’, but rather [recognise] that it’s there, and therefore we’d better facilitate it in order to make sure that people do not drown, and make things worse.

Liberal Democrats
Sophie in ‘t Veld (ALDE), Member of the European Parliament:

Centre Right
Roberta Metsola (EPP), Member of the European Parliament:

Conservatives
Morten Messerschmidt (ECR), Member of the European Parliament:

What Europe is today is built on the old traditions of European peoples, values, humanities, and other pillars of our history. So, we need something to serve that. That doesn’t mean that migration as such is a bad thing, but it depends on which cultural background, religion, and so on that the migrants are coming with, and whether they can adapt into our way of life in Europe.

Eurosceptics
John Stuart Agnew (EFDD), Member of the European Parliament:

IMAGE CREDITS: (c) BigStock – AlexRotenberg; PORTRAIT CREDITS: Sargentini (Public Domain) Groenlinkseuropa, Messerschmidt (cc) Elgaard


Who do YOU agree with on this issue?

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90 comments Post a commentcomment

What do YOU think?

  1. avatar
    Mira Possibile

    We have to keep pushing reforms that are based on principles of solidarity

  2. avatar
    Sebastian

    It is bad. Europe faces a huge array of issues within its borders. From poverty to lack of development. And demographic winter is a wrong concept. We are hugely overpopulated. If the population drops by 100 million we will still be 400 million in the Eurozone. What we need to do is set up programs to demolish abandoned houses and return them to nature. Motivate employment and social programs. Etc.

  3. avatar
    Tim

    A reasonable amount of controlled immigration good, the out of control immigration tsunami,bad

  4. avatar
    Rumy

    Not when you are importing 13 century cultures….

  5. avatar
    Aris

    Migration is a part of Human History.
    In my opinion, the problem is illegal mass immigration.

  6. avatar
    Pierre

    Is it good for EU countries to sell heavy weapons in war zone in Africa and middle-East so populations are literally desperate to cross the mediterranean sea despite the risks. The problem is far more complex than a single and simple yes or no.

  7. avatar
    Ha

    Migration is neither good nor bad per se, but rather it depends on the type of immigration and the way how destination countries deal with immigrants and natives. Are the immigrants coming to a country because they want to work or because they are attracted by social benefits? If they come to work, do they have the necessary skills and work attitude to find a (good) job? Do they have realistic expectations about the labour market in the country they want to move to? Does the destination country allow them to work? Will immigrants compete with native high wage earners for jobs in high-skilled professions (e.g. in IT or medicine) or will they propel a race to the bottom with native low-skilled jobseekers? If the latter is the case, what schemes does the government have in place to compensate the “losers” of immigration? Do immigrants want to settle permanently in the destination country or do they plan to return to their home country? Under which conditions can immigrants obtain citizenship in their destination country and are those conditions transparent? Can they bring their families and, if yes, under which conditions? Do they share the mainstream values of natives in the destination country (e.g. respect for other religions (or lack thereof), democracy and gender equality)? If not, are they willing to follow the law, even if it goes against their values (e.g. concerning LGBTIQ rights)? If they want to settle permanently, are they willing to assimilate into the country’s mainstream culture? Is the destination country clearly communicating the rules and customs that immigrants are expected to respect or follow? Are immigrants willing to learn the local language? How does the destination country support them in that endeavour? These and many other questions determine whether migration is good or bad for any country, including Europe. Personally, I believe that immigration to Europe can be a great strength if we get it right (just look at Canada, Singapore or Australia) and a big problem if we get it wrong.

  8. avatar
    José

    Ofcourse it is but with Control and not importing anyone from the ocean.

  9. avatar
    Codrin

    Neither good or bad ! We just have to be selective, not open borders like it’s no one’s land…

  10. avatar
    Stef

    Migration? From where to where? Legal or illegal? In what numbers?

  11. avatar
    Ben

    migration & integration,STOP religion-banditisme-vandalisme-cambriolage-agresions-antisemitisme-antieuropean.

  12. avatar
    Bernard

    It’s a disaster, but it makes privileged people feel virtuous while allowing them to benefit from cheap labour, so it will continue.

  13. avatar
    Fedor

    Ask the native Americans. They have the answer

  14. avatar
    Luca

    Controlled Migration is always good🔝, Uncontrolled Migration is a Mess ☢️🚫

  15. avatar
    Christophe

    Organized criminal gangs are border hopping all of the time and the EU protects them making it impossible for them to be deported if they are EU citizens. Then there are the terrorist supporting (anyone who doesn’t support Bashar Al Assad) ”refugees” from Syria who aren’t screened. Migration under EU rules is pretty toxic.

  16. avatar
    Michael

    Nobody should be allowed to leave the town of their birth. Anything else is clearly a globalist conspiracy.

  17. avatar
    Panos

    Definitely good. Migrants are young and make a lot of children and that’s exactly what we need the most.

    • avatar
      bert van santen

      How do You wish to feed and house these people? And provide labour in our high domotical society? Production jobs are decreasing fast.

  18. avatar
    Zbigniew

    Migration is unavoidable .. so it’s a wrong question.

    • avatar
      Max

      yes, i hear that Italy is one of the few developed countries that loses more people to migration than it gains. And birth rate is practically zero. Keep it up and eventually Italy will be all tourists.

  19. avatar
    Pål

    It’s natural. All animals do. Who wants to live in the same place their whole life? That’s crazy. You’ll see nothing then. Learn nothing

  20. avatar
    Maria

    It has to be controlled…or else it will be devastating! Look at France ..Belgium …Germany.Honestly I don’t want to live in this kind of society!

  21. avatar
    Andreas

    Migration is not bad but you have to be more selective. Look at US for example.

    • avatar
      Bronco

      USA is just an example of how things are wrong

    • avatar
      Franco

      Urbanczyk and Canada…

    • avatar
      George

      You better take a look at Japan.
      60 000 asylum seekers arrive each MONTH in EU.
      (and those are the “legal” applications)

  22. avatar
    Yusupha

    I see nothing bad in it.Unless you make it to be bad

  23. avatar
    Mandy

    Depends on the circumstances surely.

  24. avatar
    Panagiotis

    What a stupid question. Migration is first of all inevitable. For something that is inevitable you cannot say if it is good for you or bad. Is rain good or bad? Sometimes is good but sometimes is bad. It could be an answer concerning migration.

  25. avatar
    Enric

    Girbal Inmigration should be controled.

    • avatar
      Marc

      Armadas of fundamentalist migrants are the future, if we don’t shut the EU down!

  26. avatar
    Saul

    It is good for Europe when it is controlled migration. It takes in only those that are needed and has job availability.

  27. avatar
    Eggsy

    For Soros business is going good

  28. avatar
    Attila

    Stupid question !
    It is bad of course !
    Humanitarian aid other help in 3 world.
    Do invessments there…is more cheap, than manage everyday a cultural clash beetween imigrants and local residents.
    Do not forget the amount of money , what we pay to this people….for integration in our society….
    They want to live by own secular laws and do not want to integrate…
    For exemple …sience ’70 Turkish immigants in Germany…the 3 generation born in Germany , they do not want to be part of Germany.
    Integration failed.
    Why should be more succesful nowdays migration scheems… ?!
    Think about it , and be helpful with all people who really need help….!
    Be tolerant with the people who need real humanitarian aid.
    The healty one go home rebuild their own civilization and society….

  29. avatar
    Martine

    Bad , when each country has its own poverty in Europe, migration adds poverty.

  30. avatar
    Uli

    The question is rather…how do we make it good for us. The migration will, did happen and is happening anyway…

    • avatar
      George

      Take a look at Japan.
      Does “migration happen anyway” ?

    • avatar
      Uli

      japan is an island and arguably far away from crisis areas..unlike some believe, the middle east is quite close to europe and there is no huge ocean inbetween like with japan and australia. Or you believe the strict policies in these states are more powerful than distance? Should Europe restrict its policies until the people choose to go 3000km more? Choose a suitable example…

  31. avatar
    Narcís

    Bad, it’s a way to islamization of Europe!

  32. avatar
    Joan

    Migracion selective is good ✌️

    • avatar
      Narcís

      The only positive migration is European internal migration and also the Russian and Ukrainian migration …

  33. avatar
    Vanio

    Migration is the result of the European Union policies, we provoke this migration. So we don’t get to choose whether they are welcome or not.

    • avatar
      Luca

      Africa is totally overload of amazing Natural Resources but they have very corrupted Politicians it is the point, complaining always that the west is bad make me just laugh.

    • avatar
      Narcís

      False, the causes of massive immigration are the failure of international development aid policies and the lack of control of the demographic explosion in Third World countries.

    • avatar
      Vanio

      as if European Union cares about their prosperity. If there is no benefit (for those who offer their “aid” ) there is not aid as well. We have seen how solidarity works in these cases.

    • avatar
      Narcís

      The problem is that the European Union is only a regional market in the service of global neoliberalism. Politicians are guilty of prioritizing the interests of the economic elites against the people …

  34. avatar
    Yuan

    migrants should feel home in Europe so that together we can make a better Europe. yet it did not happen so far, hopefully it will happen. I am a migrant.

  35. avatar
    Valentin

    Migration inside EU is absolutely essential for the future economic environment.

    • avatar
      Annarita

      It would be only if it is controlled & selected

    • avatar
      Narcís

      False, Europe has enough human resources to not have to import workers from countries that do not have our culture. European civilization is in danger with so many Muslims in the interior.

    • avatar
      Matt

      Nothing like that should be controlled inside the EU unless you want to completely destroy this already dying economy.

    • avatar
      Peter

      that is what the Neo-Liberal Agenda and their Open Borders Agenda have convinced people that it is necessary. In fact what I think is really required, is to return to the Family and instead of killing it off by putting ever more taxes upon them, they would solve two problems in one, if the upped what they spend on Families and they would save many times that amount if they stopped the unnecessary migration into Europe and stayed with increasing our own population, think of the benefits in a few short years.

    • avatar
      Marisa

      migration inside EU by EU citizens is freedom of movement

  36. avatar
    Alberto

    Europe is over, now only the nationalists take power to save the possible, or the Nazis to win the civil war.

  37. avatar
    Dani

    Inmigration is def. a good synthom. We would have to worry more if people didn’t want to come and had to leave instead.

  38. avatar
    Alagie

    You loot and over grazed other continent or countries for 400 years and now you wanna live in peace??? Grazing continue

  39. avatar
    Marisa

    Stop please calling IMMIGRATION with the misleading word MIGRATION as if we were referring to birds or orher animals

    • avatar
      Todd

      Thanks! The term “migration” drives me crazy!

  40. avatar
    Munteanu

    I think history teaches us that migration is good

  41. avatar
    Filipe

    The EU faces a demographic winter. So, although it may be uncomfortable, it’s inevitable. But it should be controlled.

    • avatar
      Dominiek

      it only faces demographic winter because governments choose it this way.

    • avatar
      Filipe

      you make a good point. Although I don’t believe they did it conscientiously, the governments’ policies have led us to the current situation. Incentives to families to have more children and more employment stability would go a long way to solve the problem, but I’m afraid it wouldn’t be enough.

  42. avatar
    Sandra

    Well, if we start like this … was it good for America that so many migrants settled there?

  43. avatar
    Oscar

    Illegal immigration is aweful. Legal immigration is good.

  44. avatar
    Dtter

    First BRING BACK YOUR IMMIGRANTS from ALL OVER THE WORLD, and then CRY about immigration.

  45. avatar
    Zolfe

    All animals in the sea and on the land are allowed to migrate but not humans, they are free to roam the world but only humans are not allowed , it can only be the idea of twisted humans with average mentality ,and they are always in majority in human history ,on top they claim to be champions of freedom, sick is very soft word for them, cause sick people can be cured.

  46. avatar
    catherine benning

    Is migration good or bad for Europe?

    For all those countries, or States, as they are called in the EU, take very careful note of what can happen to your laws and the will of your people if you have mass open door migration, Look at how Brexit was taken down last night as a direct result of this woman’s lawsuit against our people and their Parliament.

    Gina Miller, Guyana migrant, took the UK Parliament to court in order to remove the will of ‘Direct Democracy’ via referendum, from the citizens of Britain and won the case against the indigenous nationals, in one ghastly blow. And last night was seen in the media as thrilled by it, gleeful in her response to the vote stolen from our countrymen.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gina_Miller

    What that court win did, was, remove from the British public the right given them by their government of the day, to vote for or against being part of the EU, as she did not want them to have it their way. She wanted a different answer. You do have to ask why it is those who are predominantly from other parts of the world want to change the votes of a country nationals, especially when it involves staying under an outside jurisdiction? What’s in it for them that the citizens of such a country is missing?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gina_Miller

    And here in part is what her action has done to the people of the UK and to their democratic rights.

    https://ukandeu.ac.uk/gina-miller-and-the-last-gasp-of-parliamentary-sovereignty

    It has put UK citizens first move toward a Swiss kind of Direct Democracy into the long grass for an eternity, and done it in this most painful, as well as disturbing.way. This immigrant, who came from a background of chaotic politics, saw fit to deprive our people of their wishes, in respect of a democratic vote through a referendum they had won over years of lobbying. Which then, handed that vote back to those same parliamentarians who wanted to deny them the vote in the first place. Who in fact betrayed their wishes. Of course, these people of parliament, in both houses, elected and unelected, had already decided they didn’t like the result the public gave in this matte,r so were gleeful with their open door policy on immigration. And so the country was left at the mercy of those who had lied to gain their position and faked loyalty to the leave vote. Once able to snatch the decision from their constituents, given through this woman’s audacity to believe she could do this, they did so without a minutes regret. Who was/is she working for?

    .

    • avatar
      EU Reform- Proactive

      Hi Catherine,

      Beware: Your UK constitution has traps & surprises, especially for the folks & laymen- of how they (majority) may or may not understand the general term “democracy”.

      Because of your constitutional concept of “parliamentary sovereignty”!

      That’s why some factions in your parliament are pushing for general election. The political winner will form a new government/parliament and can/could legally overturn whatever the previous parliament lawfully decided! The fight may never end!

      T. May lost some support calling her first (voluntary) early election. It turned out to be a miscalculation/bad advice by “speculating” to increase her MP’s. It backfired & now she struggles.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Referendums_in_the_United_Kingdom

      Your UK electoral system/constitution needs reform to establish clarity and pave a way for a future direct democratic dispensation or at least part of! (The “tyranny of the majority”)

  47. avatar
    Siegfried

    Migration from who should be the question. Who is bombing up European capitals, who is gang raping women in public, who are the drug dealers, thieves, money launderers and murderers. I make no accusation I only ask the questions.

    • avatar
      catherine benning

      @ EU Reform- Proactive

      Thank you for your reply. Debate is what this is all about, isn’t it?

      May lost the election called when she did, as a direct result of ‘Yougov’ setting up a rigged poll giving Conservative lead as 17%. Their party back room, either deliberately or because of immaturity, fell for it, then were blinded by the result. They ignored the promises made in the manifesto. Just as they are doing today. Of course, they wanted to believe their chosen leader, a politically correct woman candidate, of little savvy, would not get the votes of their members as they would vote for anything in blue. Hence, the intense dislike of what is termed ‘populism.’ The change against their political ignorance or trickery is not accepted by the elite simpleton, as it means a different mantra for their meetings. Add to that, no connection to public mood or will change, blinding them to reality. Hence, the mass risings across all the Western world, not simply the UK. People are looking for genuine leadership, not fake photo shoots we have pushed down throats now, as diminishing prosperity starves us of air. They are denying the Brexit vote. Pretending it was a mistake even when it has been rampant since the seventies. Unbelievable, when they have open knowledge of public view for many decades.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ozfrKbJk_Qw

      And the great orator.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=usJUMOlpE24

      Our Parliament is desperately trying to remove democracy from law and replace it with absolutism. They are doing this in order to appease globalist subjugation. And this move is becoming more apparent to our country every day as they fight with each other on how to suffocate ‘populism’ fast. You see, none of them are willing to admit the people rule, whether they like it or not. And the people are not accepting defeat in quite the way they anticipated.

  48. avatar
    catherine benning

    Is migration good or bad for Europe?

    This question should be more specific, but, as a general question it should ask if ‘Migration’ is good for the planet? And it has to be centred around reality of the human condition and outcome if it is thwarted. A blanket statement on an issue as important as this is impossible to clarify. Judgement is only found in the resulting chaos this move produces.

    Globalism is the reason we have mass migration. It has been and is world political policy for decades. Where and how did that arise? It was never discussed across the planet with the native people and certainly no vote or explanation was brought or allowed in the world arena prior to its inception.

    It stands to reason, the poverty stricken areas of economic and cultural inadequacy not only cannot feed or inspire their population to better standards, their leaders don’t feel it is in their interests to do so. To bring their standards into line with the richer states would diminish their Aid prospects. So, their citizens must continue to fight for the right to roam with mass migration. Otherwise, how would they be able to feed off the policies of those parts of the planet where, from hard work, scientific intelligence and planning, prosper. Except, by being of a mind set to agree to rule by the thriving, there is no other alternative than for their people to move to the fountain of life. And that is in their leaders financial interests as can be remembered by Gandhi and his policies for India. Where he demanded the end to British invasion, colonisation and subsequent rule of his adopted country and culture, in order for them to flourish without consequences that change would make. In fact, he was educated in Law in the UK and first practised it in South Africa. Didn’t India separate into Pakistan and India around that time because of cultural differences and the unrest it created, both then and now?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BNbwppRWCQY

    At that time in our European history and culture, people defending themselves against invasion by another group was acceptable in the world view. Now, that mindset is condemned by our Globalists. Except when invasion is seen as necessary for certain economic gain. I wonder why that is? Human Rights doesn’t seem to enter into globalist policy of takeover when practised by direct governmental interference.

    Europe should discuss in depth where it feels these global pursuits and policies are leading. And what it thinks it is going to achieve by them.

  49. avatar
    bert van santen

    The worst thing possible, as it`s done without control, as by the EU member states and Merkel. Now the Marrakesh pact on top of it. FAILLURE

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