Asylum and migration are policy areas that were particularly polarized in the run-up to the agreement on the Multiannual Financial Framework. Following the 'migration crisis' around 2015, we saw disputes about the scope of cooperation and harmonization in this field, struggles over the lack of solidarity among member states and vis-à-vis refugees. Against this backdrop and reflecting the high salience of the issue, the European Commission created a new and specific 'heading' for migration and border management in the post-2020 Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF). The chapter reconstructs the main steps and objectives leading up to the final MFF agreement in the field of migration. It detects five storylines that are dominant in the 'struggle over ideas' on migration and asylum: inside/outside dichotomies, an emphasis on return, the need for externalization, conditionality and solidarity.
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