International regulation of migration processes

Almost all countries of the world actively influence the processes of export and import of labor. The goal of interstate migration policy is to maximize the positive effects of international migration, minimizing the negative consequences of this phenomenon for both donor and recipient countries. In particular, the regulation of labor imports has two main objectives:

Protection of the national labour market from the spontaneous flow of migrant workers, which exacerbates the problem of employment. Ensuring the rational use of labor of foreign workers in those areas where, for various reasons, vacancies cannot be occupied by domestic labor resources.

Currently , a system of measures of state regulation of immigration has developed, which includes legislation on the legal, political and professional status of immigrants in a particular country, national immigration services, as well as inter-State agreements on migration issues.

At the international level, the activities of the national immigration services are coordinated by the SOPEMI (Continuous Migration Monitoring System) service, established by the member countries of the OECD (Organisation for Economic and Social Development). Intergovernmental agreements on the employment of foreign labour stipulate the conditions of stay of migrants in the host country, the observance of which is designed to protect the interests of migrants. Thus, in the intergovernmental agreements on the employment of foreign labor concluded between the Federal Republic of Germany and the exporting countries, there is a provision that the hiring and payment of foreign workers are carried out by employers on the basis of the same clauses of tariff contracts as for German workers. The immigration services of the countries control, first of all, the entry  of foreign workers into the country. They issue entry permits for a certain period in accordance with the applications of entrepreneurs.

The first stage in the regulation of migration processes can be considered the organization of recruitment of foreign workers, which is carried out on the basis of intergovernmental agreements, which can be bilateral and multilateral. These documents establish certain quantitative limits (quotas) for the entry of citizens into the country. Multilateral agreements have been concluded, for example, between the countries of the European Union. Of particular importance here is the regulation of immigration from third countries (i.e. from countries outside the European Union).

World practice shows that usually the restrictions of host countries do not apply to:

Workers applying for low-paid work, work with difficult and harmful working conditions, non-prestigious and low-skilled work. Specialists in rapidly developing and priority areas of economic activity, such as electronics engineers. Representatives of rare professions (diamond cutters, restorers of paintings and ancient manuscripts, doctors practicing non-traditional methods of treatment). Highly qualified specialists and representatives of free professions. Managerial staff of firms and their divisions, as well as entrepreneurs who transfer their activities to the host country and create new jobs.

In recent years, many countries, for example, Austria, Sweden, Finland are trying to tighten controls on the entry of foreign workers due to growing illegal immigration. Thus, Sweden intends to require an immigrant not only to present an already signed contract for work, but also documents confirming knowledge of Swedish or English, as well as confirmation of renting housing.

A number of Western European countries have adopted programmes aimed at encouraging repatriation (return of emigrants to their homeland). For example, in France and Germany, material payments were introduced in the event of voluntary dismissal of foreign workers, as well as their return to their homeland. In germany, payments were introduced to Turkish and Portuguese workers, which were paid only six months after their return to their homeland.

In addition to programmes to encourage repatriation through the payment of sums of money, labour-importing countries have developed various measures aimed at facilitating the return of workers to their home countries. France was among the first among the countries of Western Europe in 1975 to introduce a system of vocational training for immigrants from Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, Portugal, Mali, Yugoslavia, Turkey, Spain. Germany in the early 70s announced a similar program of vocational training for foreigners from Turkey, Yugoslavia, Greece. However, the number of foreigners trained under this programme has been very small and has not yielded tangible results in terms of encouraging repatriation.

One of the means aimed at limiting the number of foreign workers is the “fee” established in some European countries to the state for hiring foreign workers, which is gradually increasing. However, despite this “tax”, it is in many cases beneficial for entrepreneurs to use foreign labor, especially illegal labor, as less protected and more manageable.

Along with state regulation of immigration, there is state regulation of emigration as well. It is particularly developed in countries where the export of labour is an important element of economic development.

State regulation of labor exports has the following objectives:

Protection of the rights and interests of emigrant workers in host countries, countering their discrimination in the country of temporary stay. Compensation for losses from the departure of the national labor force outside the country.

The achievement of the objectives of emigration policy is based on the following principles:

Guarantee of the possibility of return of migrants to their homeland. Ensuring the entry into the country and the effective use of foreign exchange remittances of migrant workers. To contribute to the alleviation of “internal” unemployment through the departure of those contingents of workers who are not in demand in this market. Restriction of departure of those employed in those sectors of the economy whose needs for labor are not satisfied. Improvement of the domestic labor market due to the admission of immigrants who have improved their qualification level during their stay abroad.

In 1951, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) was founded in Brussels to ensure the orderly migration of persons in need of international migration services. Currently, IOM is an intergovernmental organization that brings together about 60 member countries and more than 40 observer countries. During its existence, the organization has provided assistance to 8 million migrants through humanitarian, emergency and other programs.

The Republic of Belarus has been a member of IOM since 1994 as an observer, and the IOM Minsk Bureau was opened in December 1996. The main activities of the International Organization for Migration in Belarus are interaction with government bodies, assistance in the formation of state migration policy and in strengthening the relevant state structures. IOM provides some technical and advisory assistance to the State Committee of Border Troops, the Committee on Migration, provides assistance in training personnel, organizes seminars on illegal and labor migration. The IOM Minsk Office provides direct assistance by implementing a humanitarian program for the repatriation of illegal migrants and former students “stuck” in the republic. Only in 4 months of 2001 more than 60 citizens of India, China, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Colombia and others were sent home. At the same time, many problems of illegal and forced migration remain unresolved (for example, control over the stay of refugees). In general, it should be noted that the choice of measures of state influence on the sphere of uncontrolled migration depends, first of all, on assessing the impact of a particular migration flow on the state of national security and public order.

The legal basis for the activities of state bodies of the Republic of Belarus in the field of migration is primarily the Constitution of the Republic of Belarus, the Laws “On the Legal Status of Foreign Citizens and Stateless Persons in the Republic of Belarus” of 1993, the “Citizenship of the Republic of Belarus” of 1991, the “On Refugees” of 1995, the “Employment of the Population of the Republic of Belarus” of 1991, as amended and supplemented, “On External Labor Migration” of 1998. Implementation of control by the State mainly over the legal movement of the population, the entry of citizens and stateless persons into the territory of the Republic of Belarus and departure from its borders. The functions of regulation and control are entrusted to the Migration Department under the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection. To create a framework for regulated migration, coordinated strategies are applied at the bilateral level through the conclusion of intergovernmental agreements on labor activity and social protection of citizens. Belarus has concluded similar agreements with Russia, Moldova, Ukraine, Poland, Lithuania, Kazakhstan, the Czech Republic Agreements with Yugoslavia, Armenia, Mongolia and China are at various stages of development.

The policy of the Republic of Belarus in the field of migration is based on the principles of humanism, respect for human rights, respect for the rule of law, the inevitability and effectiveness of the administrative responsibility of foreigners for violation of the legislation of the Republic of Belarus.

Thus, most states pursue, in accordance with the goals and objectives of their socio-economic development, a rather strict and strictly regulated foreign migration policy. It covers a system of special measures, legislative acts and international agreements (bilateral and multilateral) to regulate migration flows, limit the influx or outflow of refugees, illegal migrants and stimulate the inflow of cost-effective human capital, primarily scientific personnel and highly qualified specialists.