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Catalonia: New people, model under renewal

Recerca | 02/04/2008

The case of Catalonia

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Catalonia receives around 15% of the foreigners in Spain. The current challenge is different from other historical phases of immigration, due to the accumulative effect, to the possibility and will to apply public policies, and to the cultural nature of the newcomers. We need to find an adequate model to respond to the process, while building an identity and maintaining social and economic vigour.

Catalonia has traditionally been a centre of attraction for labour, which has involved two major migratory waves over the 20th century (that of the 1928 Universal Exposition and that of the fifties and sixties) which substantially changed the social, economic and linguistic-cultural physiognomy of the Principality.

The country has now received a massive new intake of workers, this time from non-EU countries, at a decisive moment in its history, marked by the desire to redesign its relations with the State, the implementation of a new Statute of autonomy and economic globalization.

There are thus numerous problems given that, apart from the problems consubstantial with the integration of groups of immigrants, immigration powers and their application are subject to great debate in so far as the success of the future policies will depend on the degree of responsibility that Catalonia can exercise.

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