Topic 1

Topic 1: National factsheets- Spain

According to the European Web Site on Integration, Governance of Migrant Integration in Spain, on 1 January 2017, 2.498.396 Third Country Nationals (TCNs) were legally residing in Spain. They represented about the 5% of the total population, according to the National Statistics Institute. As per the established legislation frameworks:

  • Foreigners Law: The Law 7/1985 established the rights and freedoms of foreigners for the first time in Spain. Law 4/2000 was in turn subsequently reformed by the Laws 8/2000, 14/2003 and 2/2009. Legal precepts set in the last reform found execution through the Royal Decree 557/2011 that aimed at consolidating the “legal, orderly and job market-related migration” model.
  • Asylum Law: Law 12/2009 represents the current normative frame for international protection in Spain. In 2003, the government approved the Royal Decree 1325/2003, providing for a temporary protection status in case of massive arrivals of displaced persons but the decree has never been implemented.
  • Integration Law: There is no Integration Law. The organic Law 2/2009 provides a general regulatory framework for integration.
  • Nationality Law: The Spanish citizenship regime was set by the Law 51/1982. This general framework was later modified and complemented by the laws 29/1995, 36/2002, 40/2006, 52/2007, 12/2015 and 19/2015. The 2 last amendments respectively facilitated the naturalisation procedures for Sephardic Jews and introduced language and civic tests.
  • Anti-discrimination: Article 71 of the Law 4/2000 established the Spanish Observatory of Racism and Xenophobia under the General Secretary of Immigration and Emigration at the Ministry of Employment and Social Security. The Law 62/2003 and the Royal Decree 1262/2007 defined the functions of the present Council for the Elimination of Racial or Ethnic Discrimination, under the Ministry of Health, Social Services and Equality.

Topic 1: National factsheets- Sweden

According to the European Web Site on Integration, Governance of Migrant Integration in Sweden, on 1 January 2017, 466,232 TCNs were living in Sweden. They represented 5% of the total population, according to Sweden Statistics. It is also worth mentioning that the mass refugee influx to Sweden 2015/6 resulted to laws and policy reforms. In particular, the established legislation frameworks is hereby briefly presented:

  • Foreigners Law: The Swedish Aliens Act was adopted in 2005. The parliament accepted a temporary law to replace it in June 2016. The law brought a drastic change to the Swedish asylum policy: refugees no longer automatically receive permanent residence permits but a 3-year, temporary residence permit instead. Beneficiaries of subsidiary protection are now granted a 13-month permit. They can prolong their permits twice and only receive permanent residence if they are able to prove their financial independence.
  • Asylum Law: The Law on Reception of Asylum Seekers was last amended with the same temporary foreigners law halting the automatic grant of permanent residence to beneficiaries of international protection. Prior to that, the 2008 amendment granted asylum seekers the crucial right to free medical care.


  • Integration Law: Sweden no longer has a dedicated integration law. Following the all-mainstream approach of the government, the Law on Measures for the Introduction of Certain Newcomers, introduced in 2010, was repealed in 2017 by the Law on Newly Arrived Immigrants, which entered into effect on 1 January 2018. The regulatory change aligns support provided to newcomers to that provided to Swedish jobseekers.
  • Nationality Law: Sweden’s first law on citizenship was adopted in 1950 and completely recast in 2001. The new legislation was last amended in 2014 to promote citizenship based on cohesion.
  • Anti-discrimination: A new Act on Discrimination came into force in January 2009. It replaces the Equal Opportunities Act and provides for the same protection against 7 grounds of discrimination, including ethnicity, religion or other beliefs.


Topic 1: National factsheets- Greece

According to the European Web Site on Integration, Governance of Migrant Integration in Greece, on 1 January 2017, 579 736 Third Country Nationals (TCNs) were legally residing in Greece. They represented approximately 5 % of the total population. In addition to this foreign population, the country also counts over 140 000 nationals with third country migrant background; 25 686 of which were naturalised in 2016. As per the established legislation frameworks:

  • Foreigners Law: The Foreigners law of 1991 contains provisions on the stay and work of foreigners, as well as on the procedure for the recognition of refugees. In 2005, a Law on entry, residence and social integration of third country nationals was introduced. The latter was reformed in 2014 with the Immigration and Social Integration Code, introducing changes in the field of residence permits, family reunification and access to the labor market. It for example grants migrants with 10+ years or indefinite residence permits with rights similar to those enjoyed by nationals. In 2015, the European Directives 2011/98 and 2014/36 were translated into the Greek legislation.
  • Asylum Law: The Asylum law of 2011 is the first legislation particularly targeting refugees and applicants of international protection in Greece. It established asylum services. 5 years later, with the adoption of Law 4375/2016, the asylum procedure underwent substantial changes, including the establishment of a speedier recognition procedure and automatic access to employment for holders of an asylum card.
  • Integration Law: Greece does not have a self-standing integration legislation, apart from the articles 128 and 129 of the Immigration & Social Integration Code.
  • Nationality Law: The First Greek Citizenship Code was adopted in 2004. Since then, two modifications were made in 2010 and 2015. The latest amendment was made in 2015 to include, among other additions, the conditions under which a child of migrants born in Greece can acquire Greek citizenship and the creation of a naturalization board at the Ministry of Interior.
  • Anti-discrimination: Greece adopted its first legislation to punish acts or actions of racial discrimination in 1979. The 2014 Law combats certain forms and expressions of racism and xenophobia.

Topic 1: National factsheets- Italy

According to the European Web Site on Integration, Governance of Migrant Integration in Italy, on 1 January 2017, 3 536 142 Third Country Nationals (TCNs) were legally residing in Italy. They accounted for 6% of the total population. As per the established legislation frameworks:

  • Foreigners Law: The legislative decree 286/1998 adopted in 1998 and its subsequent amendments represent the main legal framework on immigration and integration. Among the main amending provisions introduced, the most important is law 189/2002 which significantly reformed rules related to legal and irregular migration, with a more restrictive approach.
  • Asylum Law: Asylum is not framed into an organic legislative framework in Italy but regulated by several pieces of legislation targeting different aspects.
  • Integration Law: Italy does not have a self-standing integration law.


  • Nationality Law: Law no. 91/1992 constitutes the current legislative framework on naturalisation. The Security Bill adopted in 2009 introduced restrictive rules in the area of naturalisation by marriage, with the explicit goal of tackling ‘marriages of convenience’.
  • Anti-discrimination: Anti-discrimination is not the object of an organic legislation in Italy but it is addressed by a number of legal provisions contained in several pieces of legislation. Furthermore, the Immigration Act of 286/1998 includes provisions related to anti-discrimination. It solemnly defines equality of treatment between nationals and foreigners in access to employment, labour conditions, social and assistance and security, protection against discrimination as an individual right.

Topic 1: National factsheets- Cyprus

According to the European Web Site on Integration, Governance of Migrant Integration in Cyprus, on 1 January 2018, around 71 797 Third Country Nationals (TCNs) were legally residing in Cyprus. They represented 7% of the total population. As per the established legislation frameworks:

  • Foreigners Law: The Aliens and Immigration Law (Chapter 105) of 1952 regulates the stay of Third Country Nationals in Cyprus. The most recent amendments, made in 2017, align the national law with the EU Directive 2014/36/EU on seasonal workers as well as the EU Directive 2014/66/EU on intra-corporate transfers.
  • Asylum Law: The Cypriot Refugee Law of 2000 complements the Foreigners Law to provide better protection to refugees. It was last amended in 2016 to align with the recast Directive 2013/32/EU on asylum procedures and the Directive 2013/33/EU on reception conditions. In 2017, the Parliament also approved the agreement between UNHCR and the Government of Cyprus regarding UNHCR’s operations in the country.
  • Integration Law: Cyprus does not have a self-standing integration law.


  • Nationality Law: The Civil Registry Law states that TCNs can acquire the Cypriot nationality after 7 years of legal residence (5 years if they are parents of Cypriot citizens). They can also acquire citizenship after being married to a Cypriot national for more than 3 years and have lived in the country for at least 2. Amendments introduced in 2011 and 2013 allow for the naturalization of non-Cypriot investors, without fulfilling the criteria above.
  • Anti-discrimination: Several legislations combatting discrimination in Cyprus are applicable for migrants. The Equal Treatment in Employment and Occupation Law of 2004 addresses discrimination on the ground of race and ethnicity in the field of social protection, medical care, education and access to services. The Equal Treatment in Employment and Work Law applies to employment and the work environment. And the Law fighting racial and other discriminations combats all types of discrimination related to racial or ethnic origin.

Topic 1: National factsheets- Turkey

  • The Law on International Labor Force No. 6735, introduced in 2016, aims at determining and implementing policies on labor migration and labor market integration, such as the procedures to be followed to grant work permits to foreigners. Within this scope, the Turquoise Card has been introduced and new arrangements have been made to facilitate the employment of foreigners, including international students
  • Adopted in 2013, Law No. 6458 on Foreigners and International Protection (LFIP) 2 functions as the country’s primary immigration law and is translated into several languages*.
  • The Regulation on Work Permit of Foreigners under Temporary Protection was introduced in January 2016.As per Article 60 of the Constitution, everyone has the right to social security. Migrants can access health services under the coverage of General Health Insurance after obtaining a residence permit with condition of a minimum of one year of residence in Turkey and a declaration of legal address.
  • According to Article 38 of Law no.6458, foreigners who enroll in primary, secondary and higher education institutions are granted a student residence permit. Foreign students attending an associate or undergraduate programme can apply for a work permit after the first year, and they can work on a part time basis as per the Article 41 of Law no. 6458. These restrictions are not applied to graduate or postgraduate students enrolled in programmes providing formal education*.