In its fourth year, the "Vienna Migration Conference" organised by the International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD), convenes a broad number of decision makers and key stakeholders to discuss pragmatic, constructive and future-oriented recommendations for the next five years of migration policy making in and for Europe.
The conference, which takes place on 21 – 22 November at the Aula of Sciences, will focus on 2019 as a critical year for developing Europe's future policy directions in the area of migration. In this regard, ICMPD has developed 70 concrete recommendations for the path ahead. They should serveas input for the work of the newly appointed European Commission whose task will be to build on the progress already made and move past the gridlock that has characterised EU migration policy in recent years. The 70 recommendations for EU migration policy have been developed in close cooperation with ICMPD's 17 Member States and are officially published today.
ICMPD's Director General, Michael Spindelegger, who initiated the first Vienna Migration Conference in 2016, stresses the importance of European states searching for joint solutions: "The EU and its Member States must reconfirm their commitment towards a common vision, approach and system. We need a reformed European migration agenda that is developed and supported by all partners and has a clear concept of what exactly European migration policy aims to achieve. This can only be managed when we leave behind the political controversy disclosed by the 2015 crisis and use the momentum of the EU election year for pressing the reset button on EU migration policy making."
The conference will start with a high-level political panel, gathering European ministers and state secretaries responsible for migration. These include:
- Mr Péter Szijjártó, Minister, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Hungary
- Hon. Carmelo Abela, Minister, Ministry for Foreign Affairs and Trade Promotion, Malta
- Mr İsmail Çatakli, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Interior, Turkey
- Mr Giorgos Koumoutsakos, Alternate Minister for Migration Policy, Ministry of Citizen Protection, Greece
- Ms Cláudia Pereira, State Secretary for Integration and Migration, Portugal
The high-level decision makers will share their views on the goals and priorities for migration policy making in Europe for the next five years.
The second day of the conference will gather well known migration experts from Europe and its neighbourhood. The first panel will discuss how the EU can overcome its internal divisions over a common migration agenda and break the gridlocks that hamper the development of a comprehensive European migration governance system. Panellists, among others, include Ms Jessica Däbritz, Head of Directorate, Directorate for Migration, Refugees, European Harmonisation, Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Community, Germany and Ms Laura Corrado, Head of Unit, Legal Pathways and Integration Unit, Directorate General for Migration and Home Affairs, European Commission.
The second panel will focus on the external dimension of the EU's migration policy and on how to move forward in establishing sustainable partnerships with countries in the neighbourhood and along migration routes. The panel will host Mr Amr El Sherbini, Deputy Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs for Refugees, Migration & Combatting Trafficking in Persons, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Egypt, Mr Peter Webinger, Director General, Directorate-General for Migration, Federal Ministry of the Interior, Austria, Mr Christian Leffler, Deputy Secretary General, European External Action Service, and Ms Ece Özbayoğlu Acarsoy, Deputy Director General, Deputy Directorate General for Immigration Asylum and Visa, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Turkey.
The Vienna Migration Conference 2019 will welcome an audience of around 500 invited guests.