Geografie 2011, 116, 497-517

Twenty Years of Czech Migration Policy: Liberal, Restrictive or Something Different?

Tereza Kušniráková1, Pavel Čižinský2

1Univerzita Karlova v Praze, Přírodovědecká fakulta, katedra sociální geografie a regionálního rozvoje, GEOMIGRACE – Geografické migrační centrum, Albertov 6, 128 43 Praha 2, Czechia
2Poradna pro občanství, občanská a lidská práva, Ječná 7, 120 00 Praha 2, Czechia

Received November 2010
Accepted June 2011

This article critically reviews the generally accepted model of perceptions regarding how the Czech Authentic Migration Policy treats immigrants, particularly economic immigrants. The Czech Authentic Migration Policy (CAMP) is defined as the migration policy Czechia implements relatively independently of the EU. According to this model, the policy has been either liberal or restrictive with the main criterion for this categorization being the number of immigrants received, regardless of their legal status. The aim of this study is to analyze the factors that have shaped the development of CAMP (highlighting the influence of disagreements between Czechia’s Ministry of the Interior and its Ministry of Industry and Trade), and to suggest an alternative view, which reflects a circular-integration-oriented approach that considers not only conditions of entry, but also the level of rights acquired by migrants during their tenure. Special emphasis is given to an analysis of the terms ‘liberal’ and ‘restrictive’ and the reasons that these terms have been injected into public discourse. Further attention is focused on the Ministry of the Interior and how it has influenced perceptions of migration, both before and after the Velvet Revolution.


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