WE WILL ALWAYS HAVE TAMPERE: A Case Study on the Regulation of the Residence Status of Long-Term Migrants

Manuel Abrantes

Abstract


While European Union citizenship gradually moved from a matter of employmentrights toward a matter of fundamental rights, the status of third-country nationals (TCNs)remained locked in the policy areas of security and economic cooperation. This changed sincethe late-1990s under gradual developments favouring the centralization of migration policy. Thecurrent paper makes a contribution to trace this process by presenting a case study of the 2003Directive concerning the status of third-country nationals who are long-term residents. Anoverview of the process leading to the adoption of the Directive is followed by an examination ofthe practicalities involved in its transposition into domestic law in Portugal, a country in whichthe relative novelty of the immigration phenomenon and an inconstant economic trajectory arecritically entwined. It is concluded that migration policy can be developed at the EU level withouta common position on integration being taken. Far from an incidental outcome, this enablesnation-states to both concede benefits claimed through political mobilization for theadvancement of immigrants’ rights and reassert their gate-keeping capacity in the regulation ofmigration. The combination of protective advancements for TCNs and increased securitizationof their mobility stands out as a piece of key explanatory value to understand the adoption of theDirective in a context of tightening immigration policy in various member-states.

Keywords


citizenship, European Union, migration, Portugal, residence status, third-country nationals

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