The historical background of a country plays an integral role in shaping the government’s activities in a country and the culture of the people. Netherlands as a country is not an exception in respect to this phenomenon. In fact, Netherlands is acknowledged in history as the first country to have a parliament through an election process. Apart from being associated with other affiliations, Netherlands is one of the founding member states of the European Union, World Trade Organization and the NATO. The headquarters of various Organizations such as Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and international courts such as the International Court of Justice, the Permanent Court of Arbitration and the International Criminal Court. This implies that the foundation of Netherlands has a strong association with justice and democracy, owing to the fact that the country hosts various international organizations that are primarily concerned with justice matters. In addition, the capital of Netherlands is referred to as the world’s “legal capital”.
Netherlands had one of the most accommodative laws in the post World War II Europe, leaving its gates opens for immigrants to flow in. The identity of what it meant to be a Netherlander had become jeopardized through the large inwards flow of foreigners. This increasing immigration applied pressure on the ‘Danish model’, leading to the establishment of Danish People’s Party in 1995. The emergence of anti-immigration sentiments is indeed a surprising trend that is currently redefining the political landscape of the country. From a traditionally liberal corporatist and strongly representative society, the rise of populist parties and a failed multicultural integration path is characterized by centrist coalition building, and has redefinition of political identity of the Netherlands. The research shall seek to determine how immigration sentiments have had an effect on this newly found stance on immigration.
The four chapters and the introduction provide attempts to draw the correlation that exists between the history of Netherlands and its current global position. This is in terms of international legal matters and its involvement in international politics. In addition, the paper attempts to draw the relationship between the current immigration issues and the historical background of the country. Therefore, the basic question is whether the immigration laws of the Netherlands have had a negative impact on the Integration Process of the European Union. This research is meant to establish the fundamental causes of these laws, and their effect on the cultural diversity through immigration in European populations and the impact on the integration of the continent’s people specifically in the Netherlands. In addition, the paper establishes the impact and relationship between integration and these immigration issues on the domestic politics of the Netherlands and the European Union at large. Specific consideration is attributed to the rise of Islamic fundamentalism in the Dutch society. In addition, the xenophobic and racial expressions towards TCNs implicitly expressed in the immigration laws shall be used in this research to find possible cause for a better approach to the issue of immigration.
There is no historical way that can be deployed to get away from the structure of the Netherlands population imposed by historical viewpoints, which can be perceived to be a standoff. The current standoff would not be there if it were not for immigration. The basic argument is that immigration is a geopolitical and territorial concern in Netherlands.
Netherlands Independence Struggle
In order to have a deep understanding of the role of Netherlands in preserving Dutch identity with the struggle of foreign influence, it is vital to conduct an analysis of the country’s political history during independence up to the present day Netherlands. This is discussed in the following section.
Julius Caesar found the low-lying Netherlands. During this time, it was mainly inhabited by the Germanic tribes that comprised of the Nervii, Frisii and the Batavi. The Batavi were not subservient to the Roman Empire until the 13 B.C after which they reconsidered their relationship with the Roman Empire as allies. For the better part of the period between the 4th and 8th centuries, Netherlands was under the control of the Franks. It was integrated into the Charlemagne Empire during the 8th and 9th centuries. Netherlands was subjected to the rule of the Burgundy and the Austrian Hapsburgs. The Spanish managed to gain control of the Netherlands during the 16th century. It was during the Spanish rule that there were increasing instances of protestant movements. This was because of the fact that that the Spanish rule under Phillip II suppressed most of the political liberties of the Dutch.
One of the most significant figures in the history of Spain was William of Orange, who pioneered the protestant movements in Netherlands in1568. It was during this time that there was unity among the Northern provinces of Netherlands under the umbrella movement known as the Union of Utrecht. A significant outcome of this union was the birth of the United Provinces of Netherlands.
The war between the united provinces of Netherlands and the Spaniards continued until the seventeenth century. Netherlands was officially recognized as independent in 1648. The Dawn of the Netherlands Independence provided the opportunity for the formation of various companies. These companies played a significant role in ensuring that Netherlands was one of the Great Sea and a major colonial power from Europe. This was the dawn of Netherlands’ influence in global colonial activities and exploration, which was fostered by the establishment of the following companies:
i) Establishment of Dutch East India Company – This was charged with the responsibility of finding all-water routes to Asia and occupied unclaimed lands, which it discovered during the process of exploration. The company grew rapidly and drove several powers out of the present day Indonesia.
ii) Establishment of the New Netherlands Company – received a three-year monopoly from the Dutch government to occupy lands in Virginia. This company operated in fur trade. However, the company’s charter was not renewed. The Dutch government believed that there was need to have permanent settlements in the area to keep the English and French troops at bay.
iii) Establishment of the Dutch West India Company in 1621 – this company was established to manage all the activities in western Africa and the Western Hemisphere at large. They established permanent settlements on the lands, which formerly belonged to the New Netherlands Company.
iv) Later on in 1634, the Dutch seized the West Indies from Spain. These islands were the foundation of the Netherlands Antilles.
Netherlands independence was not completely finalized after the 30 years of war between them and the Spaniards (1618-1648). In fact, its independence played a significant role in ensuring that Netherlands exploited its Maritime power in order to have an influence in regional politics. During 1688, Netherlands entered into an alliance with England. William of Orange was invited to rule over England where he deployed merged resources of the Netherlands and England in order to initiate war on France. Through this, all the provinces under Holland and Netherlands were joined into a single kingdom, which would later split during 1830 by the separation of the southern provinces. An analysis of the above transformation reveals that Netherlands had transformed from being under the rule of foreign powers to being a maritime power with influence in the regional politics.
Netherlands adopted a liberal constitution during 1848, and the nation was neutral even during the First World War. After the Great War, colonialism started to fallout, which led to a more imperialistic way of life. This entitled migration of people within Europe. The Netherlands experienced pure labor immigration, which were the building blocks of a strong mid class society.
The Second World War and German Occupation
Neutrality of the Netherlands during the course of its history can be considered one of the prime reasons why the country was subjected to invasions. Netherlands declared itself neutral during the Second World War just as it had done during the First World War. Irrespective of this, on May 10, 1940, the Germans invaded Netherlands. The main aim of this invasion was to pre-empt a possible British invasion in North Holland. It was also meant to draw away the attention from operation in the Ardennes and lure British and French Forces into Belgium. (Sonnino, 89) They faced little resistance at the onset though later on their advancements were slowed down because of the resistance they got from the Dutch army. The Germans threatened to bomb Rotterdam if the Dutch did not surrender it. The Dutch decided to surrender the city to protect the civilians. However, the city was later bombed by mistake due to miscommunication between the negotiators and the bombers. The invasion by the Germans resulted into 2,300 dead and 7,000 wounded Dutch soldiers. The Dutch government refused to return after the invasion thereby paving way for the German Civilian governor to control Netherlands.
The Economic Background of the Kingdom of the Netherlands
Netherlands experienced a period of prosperity from 1600 onwards. This was fostered by independence, which paved way for Netherlands to become a maritime super power. In 1600, the first Dutch ship returned from India with a cargo of spices and other highly priced products. Amsterdam was the main beneficiary, which saw the city population tripling. The prosperity of the country was mainly concentrated on the province of Holland, which accounted for about 57% of the Dutch’s budget. The Hollanders were proud of their land due to its highly productive nature. Most of Netherlands’ population relied on farming as the main source of revenue. A big percentage of this came from Holland while other provinces contributed the rest. The country relied mostly on agricultural crops as their main source of income and for subsistence use (North, 123).
The Economy in More Present Times
Netherlands was enormously affected by the financial crisis that hit the globe since 2008. The growth in national income of Netherlands in 2008 was less than 2% putting the country into a recession in the fourth quadrant of that year. The economy’s GDP reduced by almost 4% by the beginning of 2009. By the beginning of 2010, the Netherlands economy recovered by almost 1%.by mid 2010 the economy had substantially recovered and the national income had grown by 1.8% within twelve months. Growth was expected to be at high of 1.75%. This growth was triggered by the increase in trade between Netherlands and other nations, which is largest driving force of the economy of Netherlands. By May 2010, commodities sold out of Netherlands had gone up by almost 20% and the imports had gone up by 15%.comparing this with imports and exports of the year before during the same months, there was an enormous improvement.
The improvement in the economy was also due to the improved high prices of oil. It was also because of the dollar being stronger than the euro. Amidst all this improvement, there were some shortcomings in the economy. These shortcomings included a 6.6 budget deficit and levels of unemployment remaining at 5.5%. Three economic packages to stimulate the economy were set up by the government at the end of 2008.this packages had total worth of 17.3 billion dollars.8.3 billion was allocated to the first package, 10 dollars to the third allotment, and the rest was allocated to the second package. A major recommendation of the stimulus package was among the investors and stated that the government was to refrain from reducing its stimulus expenditure until the end of 2010, or if the economy was fully recovered. Because of the government interference with the financial sector, finances of the country have enormously deteriorated.
The Netherlands government did in 2010 sell its entire ABN shares, which had a total cost of more than $37.6 billion. 2010and 2011 has seen the country’s economy grow by almost 0.25. The rate of unemployment shot up by almost 4% during the year 2008 to 5% in 2009. In June2010, the rate of unemployment was at high of 5.5%. It remained constant at this rate for the better part of 2010 and 2011. Investment in business significantly reduced in the beginning of the twenty-first-century but immensely recovered in 2005 to date. Investment in business was at a high of 7.5% by 2008.this business investment sharply declined in 2009 by more than 18%.further decrease of 12% was experienced in 2011. Amidst this entire decline, by the end of 2011, investment is expected to grow by a 1% rate. Before the global recession, in 2008 ever took hit Netherlands firms that were responsible of bringing the competitive edge had started complaining about the luck of competitiveness amongst them.
This was cited as one of the most critical reasons why the country fell into recession. In 2009 inflation rose to 2.5% from 1.2% in 2008. In 2010 2011 facial year, inflation had dropped to a manageable 1.2% with a 0.9% recorded on monthly bases. Netherlands was one of the countries that first received the economic monetary found.
The private sector in the country is considered the most influential sector in the economy of Netherlands. However, the public sector is considered extremely vibrant in setting the tone of the economy. The government plays a particularly critical role in through providing some of the most need requirements and regulation that control the public sector. However, the private sectors at times fill as if it has been banded by many regulations and requirements that influence and at time hinder the expansion of business. In 2010, some regulation that affected the environments was reduced by the government as a means of speeding up the development phase after the global recession that had hit the country in 2008. However, since then the government is now stiffening its hand and imposing more regulations in order to make sure that what happened in 2008 does not happen again. The government in the present is engaged n a more financial battle with private sectors to make sure that nation power grid never falls in their way.
Sectors of the Economy
The national income derived from service delivery is about 75% of the total nation income. These services include banking the transport industry the insuring sectors and logistics. Industries in Netherlands provide almost 25% of the total national income in the economy. The industries that dominate the economy include oil refinery industries, food processing industries, metalwork companies and chemical companies. The agriculture sector and fishing provide almost 2% of the total national income. Netherlands is one of the leading countries in production of crude oil, in Europe. It is also considered the second largest economy in exporting natural gas. Natural gas productions in Netherlands have been predicted to end by 2030. Netherlands has sealed deals with significant natural gas producers such as Kazakhstan, Qatar, Algeria, Libya and Russia as a means to compensate the depletion of the product in the country.
During the colonial times, the Dutch significantly relied on slave trade for its labor. For instance, the African Americans were relied upon to provide cultivation to the plantations. The treatment accorded to the African American slaves during this time was significantly bad. Slavery was abolished during 1863, although it was not fully phased out until 1873. Despite the abolishment, there was a 10-year transition period whereby slaves were subjected to slave labor with minimal pay and torture. The peak of slavery in the history of Netherlands is evident by the commemoration of the emancipation day, which marks the end of slavery in the country. This could be a possible explanation for the immigration problems, which are currently being witnessed in Netherlands. The Netherlands have created an economy that is heavily relying on physical labor that was fueled by importing of slaves. This opportunity must have been overseen by other countries, so the immigrants came and they contributed to a heavy trading of people and goods within the Netherlands. It is evident that the early economic structure of the Netherlands contributed significantly to the increasing cases of immigration that resulted to the present crisis.
Politics and governance of Netherlands
The politics and governance of Netherlands are characterized by an effort to achieve a consensus on important issues in the country and its environs. Netherlands is considered a highly democratic country. The Netherlands has traditional polders that where formed in the 12th century, when Dutch farmers started draining water out of delta swamp, grasslands and into rivers in order to establish a harvestable landscape. The Economist ranked it the 10th Democratic country in the year 2010. The country has been a constitutional monarchy since 1815 and a parliamentary democracy since 1848. The monarch is the head of the state and the position has limited powers. However, the monarch can exert some influence during the establishment of a new cabinet. The king also has the right to be informed and consulted during the state decision making processes. The king may under some circumstances, have powers that are beyond those ones granted by the constitution. The minister forms the executive power and the head of the government is usually the Prime Minister of the Netherlands (Sonnino, 100).
Policies in the post World War II Europe
Different countries in the EU formulated different policies after the Second World War. The policies were meant to see the success of the countries as they struggled during the reconstruction process. Most of the countries in the European Union had similar immigration policies that could help them control the entry and exit of immigrants into their territories. Most of the countries in the EU discriminated against the foreign immigrants. Netherlands had some of the least restrictive policies in the EU (Eyerman, 45). The state sponsored ethnic diversity clubs and instituted policies that encouraged the primary school children to speak their native languages. Netherlands’ history significantly accounts for much of its current predicament in terms of immigration issues. The system of colonial rule they adopted and the alliances that were made, as well as the various conquests they have undergone have majorly formed much of their immigration laws.
However, Netherlands population crisis is also aggravated by widespread emigration to developed countries of the Western Hemisphere and the Far East. For instance, 121,000 people left Netherlands in 2005 with 94,834 settling in Oceania, Europe, Japan or America. While the post World War II emigrants left to seek better opportunities, the current ones are people returning to their home countries and rejected asylum seekers. The disputes on immigration laws have been the subject of discussion that led to the collapse of the Balkenende’s government in late June 2005 due to the hard-line stance of the immigration minister. Current European immigration laws have superseding the Netherlands immigration laws because of concealed racism and xenophobia (Melis, 10). It has been argued that the strict laws came about because of increased immigration by people from Third world Nations (Melis 18). Therefore, the logic behind these laws has retarded the integration process of the European Union. Scholars and public policy analysts have also argued that the immigration policies are a sharp break with the past, which affects the foundations of post war Europe. The unification of the belligerent nations of Europe led to the formation of the European Union after World War II. This meant that Europe aimed at being the strongest region that was influential in global arena. Laws were enacted to encourage immigration into Europe to rebuild a war torn continent. In order to facilitate the rebuilding of Europe after the Second World War, European governments embarked on encouraging immigration in order to strengthen Europe. This approach could not work taking into account the effects of the global recession that hit the world during 70’s. As a result, Netherlands and other European countries adopted more restrictive immigration policies in order to control immigration.
The notion that Europe’s population and development has reached its highest levels is completely misleading since its current population is a result of immigration. This followed the mass emigration of people to America after the war. It is refutable to say it does not need more immigrants owing to the fact that it was not solely rebuilt by its own people most of who fled to America after the war. Additionally, if the new laws can stem immigration, the Netherlands will send a message of content with its current state. The immigration laws are also blocking the integration process, and they present the clear expression of a self-fulfilled continent that requires little else of the outside world. Not to mention that the freedom of movement even in the Schengen states is seriously inhibited by the nature of the laws.
Are xenophobic kinds of immigration laws affecting European opinions towards the Dutch and with emigration exceeding immigration? Is depopulation an inevitable phenomenon? Finally, what shall be done to immigrants integrated into Dutch political life? In order to answer these questions, there is need to understand the background of immigration laws, the nature of immigration and emigration, and the impact that these laws have on the integration process (Bransten, 58).
Historical perspective of immigration in Netherlands
Netherlands consists of primarily two groups, with the first group being an ethno-national group, which comprises of the classic European inhabitants calling themselves Netherlanders, and they perceive the country as their national homeland. The second group comprises of non-Netherlanders, who have no association with the internal cultural and social organization of the country, and they are usually referred to as allachtones, meaning external origins. In a more basic equivalent, they are known as immigration minorities. All the categories are referable by birth, and cannot be achieved by citizenship or altered by the same. This means that there is no procedure through, which Netherlanders can become home for immigrant minorities.
European nationalism is an important aspect to the Netherlands that has not been subject to change since the 19th century. In fact, it is still a legitimate claim by almost all the member states of the European Union. European nationalism comprises of self-definition using ancestry and an association with the national homeland. Because of this, assimilation from the sociological perspective has failed totally. This implies that double identities such as British-Americans and African-Americans are not available in Netherlands. In fact, Britain and Ireland are the only European Union member countries that have double national identities. The basic inference from this is that immigrants in Netherlands will continue to remain immigrants, as there is no hope of integrating their national identity with that of Netherlands. A key indicator of this trend in Netherlands is that naturalized citizenship is being gradually phased out. This is because it is no longer perceived as a form of permanent citizenship and can be withdrawn any time by the government depending on the adopted criteria. At the individual level, a person who has two foreign parents cannot be referred to as Netherlander. For instance, Islam is an indicator of foreignness; as such, no Muslim residing in Netherlands can claim that Netherlands is his national homeland under any circumstance.
The outcome of such an approach is a divided population that is normally hostile, because of the unequally in the state, with sharply dissimilar reactions concerning violent incidents. Despite the fact that violence between individuals from each of the groups is rare, violent racist threats are a common occurrence in Netherlands languages. The tensions from such divisions are because of an integration of immigration, the exclusion of national identity, the aspect of European nation state and democracy. Democracy can turn out to be a bad thing, especially in countries that have polarized populations due to ethnicity and religion, such as Netherlands. Because European nation states are not compatible with mass immigration, attempting to the transform such a country into an immigrant state is likely to impose undesirable consequences because it will result to a mockery of the aspect of national ideal and homeland. Netherlands nationalists are of the opinion that immigration is an analogous scenario to the German invasion witnessed during 1940, and are of the opinion that any immigrant is likely to be an invader. Basing on this perspective, the nationalists argue that every immigrant takes a small portion of the national territory and economy, and there is a possibility that immigrants can impose a conquest to the nation. For example, if one-fifth of the Netherlands population comprises of immigrants from Turkey, the one-fifth of Netherlands have been allocated to Turkey.
The Emerging Issues of Immigration and the Changing Sentiments on Immigration Laws in the Netherlands and the European Union
Factors behind the changing sentiments on immigration
The Dutch immigration policy and treatment of foreigners is considered open and tolerant. The country has not always had a large immigrant population. According to the constitution, nationality is granted through parentage or naturalization through birth.
One of the significant contributors behind the changing sentiments in the immigration policies of the Netherlands is that the country has been moving towards a closed immigration policy in the recent past. The EU faces several problems, which are related to immigration. Some of the problems include security concerns, economic problems attributed to immigration, racism and Xenophobia. Therefore, the EU has pushed for a stronger integration policy. Many would argue that the Netherlands did not tighten their immigration policies because of EU intervention, because of the Van Gogh murder and the ascension Pym Fortyns into politics. This was realized after the end of the cold war (Isabelle 38). During this time, immigration was becoming an international security matter. As a result, there was need for cooperation of European countries to foster international cooperation. The European Union tackled with immigration issues using several strategies. The Maastricht Treaty established a framework through which intergovernmental cooperation could be used to foster security and foreign policy. With respect to economic matter, the need to achieve economic integration implies that there should be free movement of people within the region, posing a challenge on the restrictive immigration policies in Netherlands and other European Community States.
Changes in Dutch Immigration Policy
The Dutch House of Representatives creates the Dutch citizenship law, which states that in order to become a Dutch citizen, ones father must to be born in the Netherlands. As of 2010, the law was changed to include the mother as well as long as she was born in the Netherlands before 1985. The response to the immigration problem of the Dutch has created new forms of barriers to immigration. This is arguably evident by the differences in the Dutch parliament concerning the immigration policies. There is a possibility that the immigration policy differences could initiate a constitutional stalemate in the country. A recently enacted rule requires that future residents pass a Dutch language and culture test before arriving in Holland (Hagendoorn 26). A local council is responsible for overseeing and tracking the individual integration of the residents. Any immigrant who fails to meet these requirements is fined for failing to integrate. Major cities in the republic are considering measures, which will require that a certain income level have to be met before anyone, steps his or her foot in the Netherlands. This is achieved through raising the entry and residence fees to the immigrants.
The Netherlands is a very influential country in the European Union. Member countries that are bound by the Amsterdam Treaty have championed for a common approach to immigration based on a single framework under the provisions of the European Community Treaties. The challenge is that this has not been implemented as a uniform policy. As a result, the prime objective behind the unanimity rule has failed to foster an effective solution for the immigration issues facing the EC especially Netherlands. As a result, the decision was left at the disposal of the member states.
The Demographic Impact of Dutch Emigration on the Political Structure of Dutch Public Opinion
Netherlands, with a population of 16,663,831, is the 61st most populated in the whole world and about 10% of its population is immigrants. The immigration trends into the Netherlands are influenced by its history of conquests. For instance during the independence struggles of its colonies, some territories such as Suriname, The Netherlands Antilles, and Netherlands New Guinea became equal members of the Kingdom of Netherlands with tens of thousands retaining their citizenship to Netherlands. Effects that the immigration had on the economy would later on lead to strict immigration laws; an example of this is the limitations on the number of persons allowed to settle in Netherlands and the expulsion of 26,000 asylum seekers in 2004 (Eyerman 85). The international migration is the dominant factor that is determining the size, rate of change and the composition of most of the European countries.
Migration is changing the face of the European countries. Migration usually reduces the average age of the recipient’s population. The process of analyzing the population of immigrants is very complex and only estimates are available. The Dutch nationality law is based on the principle of Jus sanguinis and the governance is administered through a kinship. Citizenship is therefore conferred by birth to a Dutch parent no matter where the birth takes place. Children who are born in the Netherlands but from foreign parents usually do not get citizenship. The Dutch immigration laws have been a major challenge especially to the foreigners who are seeking public offices. The strict rules are seen by the foreigners to be a barrier and unpleasant whereas to the Dutch they regard the rules as good since it is protecting them from any kind of external intrusion. The Dutch also views the rules to be taking care of their interests since they get the first priority before any other foreigner gets the opportunity.
Forces on the Dutch upcoming issues of integration
The Netherlands has been at crossroads with the European approach of integration to addressing the problem of immigration. This fact is evident in several instances. Most of the immigrants who have been integrated into the Dutch system are not given equal opportunities with other Dutch Citizens (Hagendoorn 235). This has resulted into direct and indirect discrimination on the immigrants. This was however not the case in the past years since Dutch was seen to be a very tolerant country in terms of the integration and assimilation of the immigrants. The trend changed in 2004 after a Muslim fundamentalist murdered a Dutch filmmaker, Theo Van Gogh (Eyerman 78). Today, integration is not fully supported and implemented by the Dutch government. The security concern for the Dutch citizens has pushed the Dutch government to implement policies that jeopardizes the integration process. Turkey has openly criticized the move by the Dutch government to implement the integration policies. The Turks feel like second-class citizens and feel like they have been isolated and not integrated in the country. There are several issues regarding the Dutch integration policies but the main reason for the implementation of the policies according to the Dutch government is for the interest of the Dutch citizens (Isabelle 78).
The Impact of Netherland’s Immigration Laws on emigration within European Union
Netherlands is a relatively small country in comparison to other member states of the EU but is seen as a powerhouse. It exerts significant influence as an active participant in the EU sittings. The Netherlands was known to be a country that immigrants opted for. However, the trend has greatly changed and the country is really working out ways to restrict its borders. Netherlands has toughened immigration policies, encouraged integration, and shut down some Muslim media outlets. This has been done due to security issues. Most members of the EU have applauded the move and some countries have implemented the measures to ensure that security of the countries is well taken into consideration (Eyerman 145). Many countries in the EU are currently imitating the Netherlands policies on immigration and integration. Even though the EU has no right to regulate immigration within its member states, it is seen to be in the process of moving towards implementing a policy that will see immigrants excluded while pushing for the inclusion of additional countries into commission. The EU is also working on ways to exclude other countries from the benefits of EU citizenship due to rising Islamic fundamentalism.
The Integration process of immigrants into Dutch Public life and its Drawbacks
The government of Netherlands believes shared citizenship is the participation of everybody in the society. In order to accomplish the integration process, immigrants who are willing to stay longer in the country are required to participate actively in the society, learn the Dutch language and live by the principles and values of the Dutch
i. The principles of the Dutch integration process
ii. Both the new immigrants and the immigrants who are already settled in Netherlands are required by the law to integrate into the Dutch society.
iii. The integration obligation is fulfilled only when an immigrant has passed the said test.
iv. Immigrants who are obliged to integrate are free to choose the type of integration examination that they are willing to undertake.
The integration process ensures that the new immigrants are well absorbed into the system. It also ensures that the immigrants are not discriminated as they live and work like the Dutch. However, the integration process also has its drawbacks. The drawbacks include:
The process of integration involves adaptation on the part of both the migrant and the culture of the country. This meant that the immigrants could easily influence the original inhabitants and absorb them into terror groups. The process of integration could also result into more terrorist gaining entry into the country thus posing a major threat to security of the country (Bransten 68).
The process of integration resulted into foreigners competing for the few available opportunities, which should be left for the citizens of Netherlands. There should be a clear cut between the foreigners and the citizens so that the citizens are given the first opportunities before taking care of the interest of the foreigners.
The Impact of Netherlands Immigration Laws on European Integration
Cultural diversity was also a highly valued aspect of the Netherlands. The immigration laws of different countries in the EU have influenced negatively the integration process. The EU encourages the coexistence of immigrants with the original citizens of the member states but some of the countries formulate policies that discourage this kind of coexistence. Most countries in the European Union have similar laws as the Netherlands thus discouraging immigrants from entering the countries. Some of the restrictions put forward by the Netherlands include learning the Dutch language prior to going to the Netherlands (Benjamin 67). A person has to know the language and pass an integration examination before being granted access into the country. In addition to that, a person has to pass a cultural examination before being granted access into the country. Most countries have implemented the immigration laws to control the migration process. Such initiatives have helped the countries carry out an integration process cautiously. This ensures that the immigrants comply with the countries values and standards thus reducing cases of terrorist attacks. Some of the Muslim media channels have also been closed in the Netherlands. This has also been emulated with several EU members thus denying some the suspicious Muslims a chance to integrate with the local community and hence in the process keeping the countries free of any external attacks that are coordinated by the immigrants. Irrespective of welcoming measures, the restrictive policies should be implemented on a fair ground to accommodate all immigrants from all races and all regions of the globe.
Solutions to Immigration Issues
There are several immigration crisis laws that exist in Netherlands and the EU at large. The problem of immigration can be solved using any of the following ways. Some of the problems include security, lack of unskilled workers, drug peddling, and congestion among others. The governments of the countries in the EU need to address the problems individually before embarking on the solution to the major problem. Security can be easily checked through boosting security at the entry points. This will also ensure that wayward behaviors like drug peddling are also controlled (Barbara 87). The integration process has to be done in more conclusive way where an immigrant is forced to master the Dutch language. Past records of the immigrant need to be checked and this will go a long way in ensuring that the immigrants have a good background character thus reducing the risk of attacks. Cross checking the records of the immigrants with their country of origin will be an effective strategy for solving the impending problem of immigration. The laws governing the immigrants should be strict and ensure that they are properly monitored especially those from countries battling vices like drug trafficking and terrorism. This will ensure that there is no crisis especially when it comes to issues of dealing with the immigrants (Vink 145).
Prospects of a common Immigration Law by the European Union to replace the National Immigration Laws of member states
There should be a common immigration law by the European Union to control the immigrants. This will help in ensuring that the immigrants are not discriminated against. The common law should take into consideration all the basic rights of the immigrants and at the same time ensure that the security of the member countries is not compromised (Bransten 56). Some of the immigration laws in Netherlands are likely to change because of the European Union ruling. The policy that Dutch partner must be earning a minimum of 120 percent with respect to the average salary has been argued against by the Court of Justice of the EU. This challenge was undertaken by the Chakrouns, who had been deprived of entry into Netherlands with main reason that her income has not reached the threshold amount of 120 percent of the average salary. The EU Court of justice argued that the minimum income requirements in the Netherlands are not in concurrence with the right to family reunifications as stated in the directive 2003/86/EC of the European Council. This directive insists on the right of the citizens of the European Union with respect to family reunification. The court decision was reached after the Dutch policy failed to comply with the directive. This also reveals that there are other elements of the Dutch immigration policy, which requires significant revision. For instance, the minimum age required for the case of a foreign partners who is migrating, which is currently set at 21, and the language tests that any potential immigrant must be subjected prior to entry into the country (Bransten 56).
The coming out from a post World War II Europe by Netherlands was dependent on its immigration laws. This factor encouraged large populations to settle in the continent and rebuild Europe after the devastating consequences of the most famous war in History. Despite this fact, scholars of international relations and public policy analysts have noted with concern the increase of restrictive immigration laws (Benjamin 25). The restrictive immigration laws being implemented in Netherlands are merely a reflection of the viewpoints of the 19th century nationalists. In the case of the Netherlands, being hostile to immigrants is normally initiated if they impose a claim on the national territory. The Netherlands has revealed that if the government can become extremely nasty with immigration, then the immigrant minorities can easily find their way out without any extreme interventions, making the possibility of a comeback of the national ethnic composition of the mid-20th centuries.
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