Category Archives: Access to Nationality

Maltese Nationality Law & Integration. The Individual Investor Programme: An infringement on the European Convention on Human Rights?

Friederike Rühmann (UNU-Merit/ MGSoG) & Sebastian Gabryjonczyk (UNU-Merit/ MGSoG)

maltaAs of 2014 Malta ranks 33 out of 38 countries, testing for various integration criteria, received a total MIPEX Score of 40 out of 100, a mark deemed slightly unfavourable. Since 2007 Malta scores a meagre 34 out of 100 when it comes to nationality.MIPEX estimates Maltese Nationality law to be the most discretionary policy in Europe. Maltese Nationality Law is deemed archaic as it mainly focuses on emigration and has not adapted to reality: Malta has since the 1970’s been a country of immigration. The International Organization for Migration (IOM) estimates a net inflow of 2.1 migrants per 1,000 individuals over the period 2010-15. The country has harsh eligibility requirements; conditions are similar to the average EU country, however highly discretionary in practice. They include language requirements and good character, but also references from “trustworthy” non-naturalised Maltese citizens including a judge, priest, doctor, lawyer, army officer, policeman or parliamentarian. Continue reading

Share

To be or not to be Danish: that is the question!

Hamlet Castle Ruslan Kapral FlickrBy Thomas Huddleston, MPG Programme Director on Migration and Integration

International Migrants’ Day is usually a day marked by speeches full of empty words and press releases calling for action. Today, the Danish Parliament celebrated December 18 by passing its long-awaited reform to allow dual nationality. Symbolically important, Denmark becomes the 18th EU Member State to fully accept dual nationality for naturalising immigrants and its citizens abroad.
Continue reading

Share

The German reform on dual nationality – an incomplete reform?

Written by Zvezda Vankova, Policy Analyst, Migration Policy Group

The German government coalition reached an agreement on dual nationality reform. However, a thorough look at this reform reveals that it does not address the issue in a coherent fashion. Dual nationality will still remain an obstacle to the naturalisation of immigrants who meet all of the other demanding legal requirements to become German citizens.

Continue reading

Share

A restrictive liberalisation? Czechs follow EU trends on citizenship

Written by Thomas Huddleston, MIPEX Research Coordinator, Co-author and Policy Analyst, Migration Policy Group

Based on EUDO-Citizenship commentary by Andrea Barsova

This October, the Czech government’s new citizenship bill received both praise and criticism from NGOs for following two contradictory trends in Europe’s new and old countries of immigration. While the acceptance of dual nationality and entitlements for the children of foreigners remove two major obstacles to citizenship, the new conditions for naturalisation are more restrictive than in most EU countries.

Continue reading

Share

Restrict citizenship in Southern Europe to fight irregular migration? More rhetoric than reality

Written by Thomas Huddleston, MIPEX Research Coordinator, Co-author and Policy Analyst, Migration Policy Group

The new Greek government wants to undermine its landmark 2010 Nationality Reform by aligning the law with other southern European countries facing irregular migration. However, Greece’s current naturalisation and birthright citizenship policies already reflect the average practice in most Western countries of immigration and the reform trends in Southern Europe. Moreover, Europe’s nationality laws are not major pull factors for irregular migration. Citizenship restrictions ‘in the name of irregular migration’ are often based on ancedotes about ‘birth tourism’ and rhetoric from the far-right.

Continue reading

Share

New Belgian Nationality Law: still something to celebrate?

Written by Thomas Huddleston, MIPEX Research Coordinator, Co-author and Policy Analyst, Migration Policy Group

On 19 July, a proposed new Belgian Nationality law passed the Belgian Parliament’s Justice Committee with a large majority. Naturalisation should be “migration-neutral,” meaning that applicants should be living in Belgium as long-term residents. Also, applicants should already be linguistically, socially, and economically integrated before they apply.On the eve of Belgian’s National Day, is this new proposal something to celebrate? Or will it undermine Belgium’s liberal naturalisation policy and its positive effects on integration?  Continue reading

Share