Spanish amnesty worsened immigrant problem-GermanySpanish amnesty worsened immigrant problem-Germany
A Spanish amnesty for illegal immigrants has drawn more of them to Europe and unilateral policies should be abandoned in favour of joint international solutions, Germany's Interior Minister said on Sunday. Europe may be "overwhelmed" by migrants if the economic and social gap between it and impoverished Africa continued to widen rapidly, Interior Minister Otto Schily warned, in an interview with the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung. "The pressure on Europe from migrants will increase so dramatically that we will be totally overwhelmed," the paper quoted him as saying. "Not even three- or five-deep layers of fencing will prevent it." In recent weeks, large groups of African migrants have tried to get into Europe by storming razor wire fences around Spain's North African enclaves of Melilla and Ceuta, which are situated on the Mediterranean coast of Morocco. Eleven have died in the last 10 days. "Wide-ranging campaigns to legalise immigrants such as in Spain mean more illegal immigrants are drawn to Europe," Schily said. "In the long term immigration and refugee problems cannot be solved with unilateral action, but only with European and international cooperation," he added. In February, Spain introduced a three-month amnesty for illegal immigrants as part of a drive to lift them out of the shadow economy, give them rights and make them pay taxes. Around 700,000 people took advantage of the scheme, which the government said helped better regulate immigration in a country that is a main gateway into the European Union from Africa and Latin America. "It could be sensible for individual EU members to sponsor African states to help them overcome their economic and social plight," he said. "It would be especially important to improve trading conditions for African states." Schily said if a country did not "fulfil its international obligations" regarding illegal immigrants then that would have an impact on economic and political cooperation.
China to outpace EU in research spending in just five years: report
In just five years, China will proportionally be spending more on research and development (RD) than the European Union, the Financial Times reported Monday. "The Chinese trend is extremely clear. If the trend continues, (China) will catch us up in 2009 or 2010," Janez Potocnik, EU commissioner for research, told the newspaper paper. "The conditions for RD in some emerging markets like China are improving and it is obvious that (European companies) are transferring some of their investments there," he was quoted as saying. The newspaper said that at present growth rates, the EU's public and private spending on RD is set to rise from 1.93 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2003 to 2.2 percent in 2010.