Market Insight

Europe: Migrants, Schengen and the need for Identity Credentials.

May 27, 2015  | Subscribers Only


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In early 2015 news was dominated by the Mediterranean migrant crisis and the associated tragic loss of life. The whole episode opened the debate about immigration into the European Union and travel between member states. The lack of checks between borders in the Schengen zone means that those migrants and others are very difficult to track.

Over 2014 and 2015 right wing political parties across the entire European Union have positioned themselves as protecting national borders and reclaiming national sovereignty from Brussels. Parties such as UK Independence Party in the United Kingdom, Front Nationale in France, Alternative für Deutschland in Germany, Progress Party in Norway and the Freedom Party in the Netherlands have all seen big gains in national polls. The success of the right wing parties has forced more mainstream parties to strengthen their immigration offerings.

A potential solution major parties may use to combat this issue is a more collective approach to identity credentials, but with so many disparate identity credentials and systems across countries, more co-operation will be needed.

The question of the place of identity credentials across Europe will enter the current political narrative. The opening of debate around immigration and the suggestion coming out of Libya of how Islamic State militants will exploit the migrant crisis mean the issue will become a priority.

Our analysis

The European Union is facing a crisis about its fundamental aims.....

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