The southern Mediterranean region has close ties and a long history of cooperation with EU member states in the areas of trade, foreign investment, and migration. The need for further cooperation has become urgent since the outbreak of war in Syria and the resulting increase in numbers of displaced persons, many of whom have found asylum in southern Mediterranean countries. Many refugees will not be able to return to their country of origin, at least not in the foreseeable future. This raises issues about their integration in the countries of first asylum.
The workshop brings together researchers and policymakers to discuss the economic opportunities of refugees and other immigrants in the southern Mediterranean countries. The following questions, among others, will be addressed: Are these countries economically able to accommodate large inflows of migrants? How is the labour market integration process currently being managed and what challenges do host countries face? What new policies and tools can be developed and how can cooperation with the EU help?