Topic 1: Legislative context / Labor market/ Education

  • Directive 2009/50/ECon the conditions of entry and residence of third-country nationals for the purposes of highly qualified employment created the ‘EU blue card’, a fast-track procedure for issuing a special residence and work permit, on more attractive terms, to enable third-country workers to take up highly qualified employment in the Member States. The Directive is being constantly revised, with late progress being focused on the inclusion of skills and the recognition of professional experience equivalent to education qualifications.
  • The Single Permit Directive (2011/98/EU) sets out a common, simplified procedure for third-country nationals applying for a residence and work permit in a Member State, as well as a common set of rights to be granted to regular immigrants.
  • Directive 2014/36/EU, adopted in February 2014, regulates the conditions of entry and residence of third-country nationals for the purpose of employment as seasonal workers. Migrant seasonal workers are allowed to stay legally and temporarily in the EU for a maximum period of between five and nine months (depending on the Member State) to carry out an activity dependent on the passing of seasons, while retaining their principal place of residence in a third country. The directive also clarifies the set of rights to which such migrant workers are entitled.*

*Fact Sheets on the European Union, Immigration policy (

  • Directive 2014/66/EUon the conditions of entry and residence of third-country nationals in the framework of an intra-corporate transfer was adopted on 15 May 2014. The directive makes it easier for businesses and multinational corporations to temporarily relocate their managers, specialists and trainee employees to their branches or subsidiaries located in the European Union.
  • Directive (EU) 2016/801on the conditions of entry and residence of third-country nationals for the purposes of research, studies, training, voluntary service, pupil exchange schemes or educational projects was adopted on 11 May 2016 and was to be transposed by 23 May 2018. It replaces the previous instruments covering students and researchers, broadening their scope and simplifying their application*.


*Fact Sheets on the European Union, Immigration policy (

International and European frameworks promote a health equity approach, though the national commitment is obligatory for ensuring  equal access to health care system. 

National legislations, policies and actions are required to comply with international and European standards that set parameters for the respect of human rights, including health.

At the end of 2017, No EU Member States had an ongoing health strategy or action plan designed by ministries responsible for Health to specifically target migrants and people of migrant descent.

A 2017 research on the implementation of the right to healthcare under the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) commissioned by the European Commission established that although all EU Member States have ratified the UNCRC, only four (Cyprus, Croatia, Italy and Spain) have introduced a legal disposition that guarantees this right to all children living in their territory, irrespective of their legal status (nationality, social insurance or residence).

Seven (France, Greece, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Sweden) ensure health care to all groups of children residing in their territory through regular health care legislation, by setting out the eligibility criteria or by organising special additional schemes for specific groups that fall outside the main statutory coverage.*