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Migration flows

In a globalised world, migration has become one of the driving forces behind social and-economic transformation and relations between States. The International Organisation for Migration (IOM), created in 1951, estimates that there are approximately 272 million international migrants, representing 3.5% of the world's population. Over the last few years, the European Union and the United Nations have placed migration at the centre of their attention and have developed an institutional and legal architecture to deal with migration issues in a concerted manner.

In the international sphere, Spain promotes a supportive and effective migration policy, participates actively in international migration fora and is an active party in the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development, whose goal 10.7 calls for "facilitating orderly, safe, regular and responsible migration and mobility of people, including through the implementation of planned and well-managed migration policies". To this end, Spain considers it essential to cooperate with countries of origin and transit in the responsible management of safe, regular and orderly migration, as well as in the prevention of unlawful migration, the fight against smuggling and human trafficking.

Frontex headquarters. Poland. Photo: NOLSOM-MAEC

​This solidary and effective migratory approach is transferred to Spanish action in the EU framework.​ In 2015, the European Union adopted a European Agenda on Migration and is currently working on drawing up a new Pact on Migration and Asylum that will promote new regulations and common procedures to improve the management of migratory flows. Within this Pact, valuable instruments of the EU are included, such as the migratory and mobility dialogues with third States and partner countries​​, which are included in its Global Approach to Migration. These include the Rabat Process and the Khartoum Process, established with African partner countries to contribute to the management of safe, regulated and orderly migration, to jointly reinforce the fight against unlawful migration and to develop specific programmes and actions to address the root causes of migration.​

The European Union has carried out a reform of institutions such as the European Asylum Support Office or the European Border and Coast Guard Agency, known as Frontex, its former name. In the fight against unlawful migration, Spain collaborates especially with the authorities of the countries on the West African route, offering technical support and furthering a sustained effort of institutional capacity-building.

The adoption in December 2018 of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration was a milestone, creating a framework for cooperation that recognises that no State can address migration alone. Spain has been a strong supporter of this Global Compact from the beginning and has actively participated in both its negotiation and its subsequent institutional development, which includes the Network of the United Nations Migration Board and the International Migration Review Forum, which should ensure adequate monitoring of the 23 objectives set out in the Compact.​


​Related documentation

Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular ​MigrationIt opens in new window

Migration policy in the European UnionIt opens in new window

Global Approach to MigrationIt opens in new window

New Pact on Migration and Asylum

FrontexIt opens in new window

Global Compact for ​​Safe, Orderly and Regular MigrationIt opens in new window