The European Commission, the E.U.’s executive body, on Tuesday proposed curbing illegal immigration while offering to make it easier for qualified migrants to get work permits in the 28-nation bloc.
The E.U.’s executive presented a plan to reform its Blue Card scheme – similar to the U.S. Green Card – which hasn’t been widely used since it was launched in 2009.
It also plans to reach agreements with non-E.U. countries used as transit routes for refugees, such as Niger, Libya and Lebanon, to take back illegal immigrants and combat traffickers.
The two measures are aimed at limiting and controlling immigration after well over 1 million refugees and migrants reached Europe over the past year, mostly illegally and via dangerous routes across the Mediterranean.