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Immigration, one of the answers to Europe's demographic aging

Motion for a resolution | Doc. 15629 | 11 October 2022

Mr Pierre-Alain FRIDEZ, Switzerland, SOC ; Ms Sibel ARSLAN, Switzerland, SOC ; Ms Marina BERLINGHIERI, Italy, SOC ; Ms Margreet De BOER, Netherlands, SOC ; Mr Ahmet Ünal ÇEVİKÖZ, Türkiye, SOC ; Mr Irakli CHIKOVANI, Georgia, SOC ; Mr Jeremy CORBYN, United Kingdom, SOC ; Ms Heike ENGELHARDT, Germany, SOC ; Mr Fabian FUNKE, Germany, SOC ; Mr Paul GAVAN, Ireland, UEL ; Mr Gerardo GIOVAGNOLI, San Marino, SOC ; Lord Leslie GRIFFITHS, United Kingdom, SOC ; Mr Domagoj HAJDUKOVIĆ, Croatia, SOC ; Ms Inka HOPSU, Finland, SOC ; Ms Marietta KARAMANLI, France, SOC ; Ms Stephanie KRISPER, Austria, ALDE ; Mr Jacques LE NAY, France, ALDE ; Mr Max LUCKS, Germany, SOC ; Ms Marica MONTEMAGGI, San Marino, SOC ; Mr Hişyar ÖZSOY, Türkiye, UEL ; Mr Julian PAHLKE, Germany, SOC ; Mr Paulo PISCO, Portugal, SOC ; Mr Axel SCHÄFER, Germany, SOC ; Mr Stefan SCHENNACH, Austria, SOC ; Ms Dunja SIMONOVIĆ BRATIĆ, Serbia, SOC ; Ms Liliana TANGUY, France, ALDE

Migration pressure has become, especially since 2015, a key issue for our continent. Faced with an unprecedented arrival of migrants, Europe has had great difficulty in facing this challenge in a united and responsible manner. European solidarity has shown its limits and many countries have refused to contribute to the common effort in this area. The very definition of the right to asylum is being questioned by some countries. Some talk of Fortress Europe, while migration is considered by many as the ultimate evil. And we may not have seen anything yet, as suggested by the consequences of the climate crisis looming ahead.

Yet migration may well be an opportunity for Europe, an aging continent with several of its countries depopulating. This phenomenon finds mainly its causes in the increasing life expectancy thanks to medical progress and improved living conditions, coupled with declining birth rates on the continent as a whole.

The age pyramid in several countries shows a worrying reduction in the youth and working age cohorts, as opposed to the impressive growing of the number of retirees, many of whom are now reaching the fourth age, which is often synonymous with dependency.

What will be the future of demographics in Europe? Who will take care of our elderly? Who will keep society running? The answer, at least in part, may lie with work force from elsewhere.

It is necessary to draw up an analysis of the demographic situation in Europe, globally but also regionally, as well as innovative solutions to be explored towards the opening of legal and safe mobility channels based on articulated around reception policies and respect for the common norms and values that unite the members of the Council of Europe.