Practical Measures for Reducing Irregular Migration towards Belgium

This national report on the EMN-study topic "Practical Measures for Reducing Irregular Migration" provides an overview of existing approaches, mechanisms and measures implemented by Belgium to address irregular migration.

The major objectives of this study were to:

-  Examine the overall historical and political approaches towards irregular migration;
Outline the EU and national policy and legal frameworks with regard to preventing, detecting, addressing and reducing irregular migration, and their drivers; 
- Explore the effects of EU policy and legislation on national policy, procedures and practices;
Draw conclusions about the effectiveness of the practical responses to irregular migration

In particular, the study identified effective practical measures undertaken to:

  1. Address irregular migration before the migrant arrives  – i.e. at pre-entry level;
  2. Detect the entry of irregular migrants onto the territory;
  3. Monitor and ensure migrant compliance with the respective conditions of their visa and/or other permission to stay in Belgium in order to avoid overstay; and
  4. Address the (legal) situation of irregular migrants by providing ways out of irregularity.

The study focused on  third-country nationals found to be illegally present.

This EMN study will serve to inform policymakers and practitioners about the practical measures that have proved effective and proportionate in addressing the issue of irregular migration, both in relation to prevention and in providing pathways out of irregularity, including best practice. It will contextualise national policies and practices within the overall EU policy framework, and explore the effects of EU policy and legislation on national policymaking and practice.

This EMN study is only available in English. The reports performed by other EU-member states can be consulted on the European EMN-website

Author: Nathalie Perrin; Centre for Ethnic and Migration Studies - University of Liège

Publication Date:
Mon 23 Jan 2012
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