The challenges of migration and integration will continue to be one of the main topics of public debate in the Baltic and Nordic region, as well as globally. The Nordic region is one of the most integrated regions in the world and the experience of the Nordic countries confirms that free movement of people is one of the essential prerequisites for development. It has given people better opportunities to study, live and work in their neighbouring Nordic countries. The free movement of people will also be one of the main aims of Nordic cooperation in the coming years to ensure the possibility to move freely within the Nordic region, to work, live and do business in the Nordic countries, or to study.
The new Mobility Action Plan, developed by the Nordic Council of Ministers for 2019-2021, consists of concrete projects and programs that support the free movement of individuals, as well as measures to further develop the prerequisites for free movement and better integration of Nordic companies and individuals.
This year's migration conference will address the following topics:
- Why is mobility and migration such an important area of co-operation for all countries and regions?
- How has cross-border cooperation and mobility affected the development of the Nordic-Baltic region?
- How do countries cooperate in supporting cross-border mobility in the Nordic region, could this be a source of inspiration for the Baltic countries?
- What could be the future trends of migration and how do they concern the Nordic-Baltic region?
Nordic and Baltic speakers will discuss the impact of mobility and migration on destination countries based on the Nordic experience, and about migration trends in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. Professor Jussi Jauhiainen from the University of Turku will deliver the first key-note speech. Claes Håkansson, Senior Adviser to the Nordic Council of Ministers, will talk about Nordic countries´ cooperation in removing barriers of cross-border mobility and cooperation. Tuomas Martikainen, Director of the Migration Institute of Finland will chair a discussion panel on migration trends between Estonia and Finland.
Research shows that there has been a clear turn in migration in Estonia in recent years, and immigration has outpaced emigration figures, but what are the current trends in Latvia and Lithuania? In their presentations, academic Tiit Tammaru from the University of Tartu and Professors Zaiga Krisjane from the University of Latvia and Donatas Burneika from the University of Vilnius will present their Baltic migration experiences. The conference will also include the launch and presentation of a new book “Mobility, migration and transnational connections between Estonia and Finland” (edited by Rolle Alho & Kaja Kumer-Haukanõmm).
The conference is based on the results of recent academic research and presentations by migration and integration experts from the Nordic and Baltic countries. The aim of the conference is to strengthen Nordic-Baltic cooperation on migration research, focusing on the exchange of knowledge and experience in the field of migration and integration, thereby contributing towards a sustainable and balanced development of the Nordic-Baltic region. The co-operation partners of the conference are the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Estonian Ministry of Social Affairs, the Danish Embassy in Estonia, the Migration Institute of Finland, Malmö University, Nordregio, the Nordic Welfare Centre and many others.