by • March 31, 2017 • Migration, Immigration & RefugeesComments (0)175

Migration: The Bigger Picture

We have been beset with certain humanitarian crises but nothing trumps the over sixty million currently displaced across the world at the moment – and this is the highest since World War II. Delineating on this, we have to contextualize between economic refugees & migrants and political refugees and migrants. Candidly, I’m more sympathetic to the latter because they are fleeing for their lives in a very urgent way.

More fundamentally, there are greater policy crises in the manner in which economic policies has been designed and implemented over the past decades. Whether its political or economic migration, it’s an artifact of flawed political policies, particularly economic policies that have pervaded the geopolitical environment for decades. Public policy at the international level is characterized by these three things; short-termism, zero-sum games, and a boomerang effect.

In the 1980s and 90s, the West were seduced by the prospects of globalization and it was focused on trade and services and the movement of capital and it focused less on immigration. The European Union at the instance came up with policies – like the common agriculture policies that locked them to trading agricultural produces with each other, thereby displacing farmers from the emerging world (Africa & South America) from accessing the 500 Million strong European market.

It’s a very comfortable narrative for Western nations to accuse nation-states that don’t subscribe to liberal democracies for the endemic problems of illegal migration but the truth is that the political leadership of advanced nations has failed abysmally. There’s a need for reformation in their political realm because it has brought about negative externalities such as – income inequalities, corruption, degradation of the environment to mention but a few.





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