You are here: Home Knowledge Base Economy Fighting Against Poverty in the Crisis Aftermath Implementations Programme to support entrepreneurs of Moroccan origin in Europe in setting up sustainable economic activities in Morocco
Symposium 2009

Implementation - Programme to support entrepreneurs of Moroccan origin in Europe in setting up sustainable economic activities in Morocco

The Challenge

Poverty reduction has become the central objective of development policy, as reflected in the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). While economic growth is seen as an important ing ...

Poverty reduction has become the central objective of development policy, as reflected in the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). While economic growth is seen as an important ingredient in achieving sustainable poverty reduction, the emerging consensus is that growth has to be pro-poor to reach such ambitious targets as the MDGs.

The sight is always heart-wrenching: Dozens of boats overloaded with refugees from North Africa try to make it to the northern shores of the Mediterranean. Those which land in Italy dispel their human cargos to a thoroughly uncertain future. Only very few will be accepted into the European Union (EU) as legal political refugees. Most will be returned to their homelands. Some will stay as illegal immigrants. As more countries in North Africa fight their way to democracy, the demands on the EU for better cooperation will increase. "Circular migration", an idea discussed at the Global Economic Symposium 2009 in Plön might be useful here.

The World Bank is a fan of the idea

Programme to support entrepreneurs of Moroccan origin in Europe

The idea is to provide re-entry visas for migrants on renewable short-term contracts. The World Bank is a great fan and has repeatedly advocated its use. In the EU, the "mobility partnership" championed circular migration with Moldavia and the Capverde Islands. The program was close to being realized when the financial crisis hit and it had to be abandoned. The UK government has also launched an international action plan to encourage circular migration and prevent illegal immigration. The experts at the GES in Plön saw circular migration an effective response to the "brain drain," which often deprives developing countries of their human capital and has serious consequences for the delivery of key services such as education or healthcare. Circular migration can be supported by re-entry visas for migrants on renewable short-term contracts, portable pensions, and other social benefits.

"Ethical recruitment" practices and measures to improve working conditions, infrastructure and career opportunities for high-skilled personnel in developing countries should accompany acquisition of professionals from sectors exposed to the brain drain. On-the-job training and skill acquisition schemes affecting employability and knowledge transfer of migrants can also support circular migration.

Train four nurses, keep three in the developing country

The number of professionals could be increased through a trade-off with developed countries. For example, a developing country trains four nurses: a developed country takes one while the developing country retains three. Countries who take on skilled professionals from developing countries should pay for the skills and the training that have been invested in them. Remittances will contribute more to job creation if policies help to create stronger incentives to save and invest in migrants" countries of origin – particularly in community development projects and small-scale labor-intensive business.

Policies should seek to create incentives to make greater use of the remittances for productive investment. Expanded access to money transfer institutions, a reduction in transaction fees and improved safety for money transfers should also be promoted. Remittances can counterbalance deficiencies in local insurance systems and function as social safety nets.

A Spanish Co-project with Colombia

"Circular migration is indeed a promising idea", said Jean-Pierre Bou, a policy officer in the Directorate general for Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship at the European Commission. Colombia and Spain have run a successful project in the farming sector: 1200 migrants from a small number of rural communities in Colombia have worked for 600 Catalan framers and cooperatives in Spain. Belgium also allows for the issuing of multiple-entry visas for certain migrants. They can return to their country of origin without losing Belgian residency. One interesting project is the "MIDA Grands Lacs" programme which enables members of the Central African diaspora to return temporarily to their country of origin in order to participate in development projects. A similar program is being developed in Morocco.

France has concluded agreements with third party countries on circular migration, which enable third country nationals to acquire new skills in France through on temporary non-renewable visa. The Netherlands has set up a pilot project on circular migration, involving a small group of labor migrants from Indonesia and South Africa trained at secondary educational level. These people are permitted to "work and learn" in the Member State for a maximum of two years, in particular in areas with labor shortages.

    Related Solutions

    Solution
    Symposium 2009

    Promote “circular migration” by providing re-entry visas for migrants on renewable short-term contracts, reducing transactions costs for remittances, providing policy incentives for migrants to use their contacts to set up ...

    Promote “circular migration” by providing re-entry visas for migrants on renewable short-term contracts, reducing transactions costs for remittances, providing policy incentives for migrants to us ...

    Promote “circular migration” by providing re-entry visas for migrants on renewable short-term contracts, reducing transactions costs for remittances, providing policy incentives for migrants to use their contacts to set up companies in their home countries, and policies to enable developed countries to pay for the training invested in migrants for poor countries.

    Polity, Business