Taking stock of Africa-Europe
cooperation on migration:
Enduring tensions and policy

This chapter discusses the progress in developing cooperative migration policies between
European and African countries over the past 20 years. Rather than providing a comprehensive review and assessment, the specific aim of the chapter is to reflect critically and ‘take stock’ of major policy
achievements and failures in this cooperation. In doing so, it identifies fundamental unresolved issues.
Unless they are identified clearly and discussed openly, there is little hope of overcoming persistent obstacles in Africa-Europe partnerships on migration and of making substantial progress toward more effective and sustainable joint policies in the future.
The chapter shows that there is a wide gap between the frequency of new policy announcements and the
rather limited progress made in practice. After more than 20 years of agreements and initiatives aimed at
strengthening cooperative policy making on migration, tensions remain unaddressed and major objectives unachieved. For example, a key priority for African countries has been to enhance legal pathways for migration to Europe, e.g., through expanded labor migration channels, including for lower-skilled workers whose opportunities for migration to Europe are currently quite restricted.

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