Spain to spend EUR 127m on new immigrants

31st May 2005, Comments 0 comments

31 May 2005 , MADRID — Spain is to launch a EUR 127 million plan designed to integrate immigrants hoping to benefit from a recent amnesty.

31 May 2005

MADRID — Spain is to launch a EUR 127 million plan designed to integrate immigrants hoping to benefit from a recent amnesty.

Some 700,000 immigrants were set to be granted legal status as a result of a three-month Spanish government programme that ended on 7 May and that was designed to clamp down on the underground labour market.

The secretary of state for immigration, Consuelo Rumi, said the government was ommitted to cracking down on clandestine immigration on the one hand while integrating bona fide immigrants.

"Integration is one of the government's priorities," Rumi said, adding that Madrid believed immigrants could contribute to "dynamism and economic growth".

Of the cash on offer, EUR 48m were destined for education.

Under the terms of the amnesty, immigrants will only benefit if they can show they were registered with a local council before  7 August last year, have no criminal record and possess at least a six-month work contract.

Rumi rejected criticism from some of Spain's EU neighbours, including France and Germany, that its plan could prompt heightened demand for legal status within their borders.

She insisted the plan was "totally coherent with what is being done within EU institutions".

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news

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