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Top 10 ranking for migrant integration includes five EU countries

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By Jack Parrock
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Top 10 ranking for migrant integration includes five EU countries
Copyright  Javier Bauluz/Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.
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As many as five European countries have been placed in the top ten of a ranking for the integration of migrants.

Sweden, Finland, Belgium, Ireland, and Portugal were all found to be some of the world's best countries when it comes to helping refugees assimilate into society.

The Migrant Integration Policy Index (MIPEX) report releases its findings annually and ranks how well immigrants are integrated when they arrive in a new country.

The list considers 52 countries in total.

All five EU countries scored sixty-four per cent or higher, with the US, Canada, New Zealand, Australia and Brazil making up the rest of the top ten.

"Integration policies are slowly improving over time. Since 2014, the average country has gone up by 2 points on our 100-point scale. EU countries have gone up 1 point - both in Western and Central Europe," Thomas Huddleston, coordinator for the MIPEX told Euronews.

Commission Vice-President Margaritis Schinas clearly supports a more integrated EU, telling reporters in November: "It is integration and inclusion that can help us fight xenophobia, exclusion, radicalisation and us-vs-them narratives. We need to build mutual respect and foster a migrant's sense of belonging."

Some members of the European Parliament, however, worry about the continent not upholding its own traditional values.

Cristian Terheş, a Romanian MEP for the right-wing ECR Group, said: "You cannot talk about the EU, you cannot talk about Western values, without acknowledging the important role of the Judeo-Christian values and I think we need to emphasise this in order to help these people who are coming here to integrate better."

MIPEX coordinator Huddleston, however, maintained how important integration policies are.

"Immigrants in countries with more inclusive policies end up getting more equitable health outcomes," he said.

"I think this raises an alarm bell for the future because if we want to get out of COVID-19, we're actually going to need inclusive health policies," he added.