Research Handbooks in International Law series
Edited by Vincent Chetail and Céline Bauloz
Chapter 15: Labour migration and the European Union
Labour migration in the European Union (EU) poses numerous questions regarding its subject matter. Particularly in a volume on international law, the EU has much difficulty determining whether what goes on within the borders of the 28 Member States is international or internal. Migration law forms a central element of that confusion. Is the movement of EU nationals from one Member State to another to seek employment properly designated as labour migration or does the term used by the EU institutions of EU mobility better describe the activity? Does it matter whether the people moving to seek work are nationals of a Member State which only joined the EU recently and in respect of whom transitional arrangements on free movement of workers apply, third-country national family members of EU nationals or EU nationals from the original Member States? At the time of writing in 2013, three Member States (Bulgaria, Croatia and Romania) were still subject to transitional arrangements on the basis of which their nationals do not have the right to go and seek work in any other Member State unless that Member State, in accordance with its national law, has desisted from the application of the transitional measures (the majority by 1 January 2012). Enlargement is not over. There are a number of other candidate countries for EU membership including: Iceland, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, and Turkey. Potential candidate countries include: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia and Kosovo (a non-state seeks to join a non-state group).
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