Macron’s France to Boost Economic Migration

France's President Emmanuel Macron addresses media representatives at a press conference during a European Union Summit at European Union Headquarters in Brussels on October 18, 2019. (Photo by John THYS / AFP) (Photo by JOHN THYS/AFP via Getty Images)
JOHN THYS/AFP via Getty Images

While the government of French President Emmanuel Macron has promised to tighten some forms of migration, it has also presented new quotas to boost economic migration.

The government is expected to hold an annual debate in the French parliament in the next year to determine the various migration quotas by different sectors, while supposedly maintaining a firmer stance on asylum claims, French newspaper Le Parisien reports.

“Quotas have been talked about for fifteen years. But for us, it’s not a taboo subject. You have to talk about it, but talk about it properly, calmly and objectively,” an advisor told the newspaper.

Prime Minister Edouard Philippe detailed the measures on Wednesday, saying that the parliament would determine each year the quotas for new economic migrants and would begin in the summer of next year.

While populist leader Marine Le Pen labelled the move a “political swindle,” the government also claimed it would get tougher on chain migration, or “family reunification”, which accounted for the largest number of residency permits granted in 2018.

President Macron also said that asylum seekers would have to wait at least three months before they would have access to the country’s healthcare system in full, and said there would be more control on other programmes including the allowance given to asylum seekers.

For the past two years, France has seen a record number of asylum claims, topping 123,000 in 2018 and breaking the previous record set in 2017 by 22.7 per cent.

During the session, Prime Minister Philippe also mentioned the possibility of a rematch debate between Marine Le Pen and President Macron in the next presidential election.

“It validates the fact that, in polls today, the two candidates, the two antagonistic visions that express a real choice in the eyes of the French, one is carried by Emmanuel Macron and the one I have the honour to wear,” Le Pen said.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)


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