The website for critical discussion about migration in Central and Eastern Europe.

A Tumultuous Decade: Employment Outcomes of Immigrants in the Czech Republic

The economist Daniel Münich examines the immigrant workforce in the Czech labor market, which remains smaller than in most western European countries but has more than doubled since 2000. He found out that there is a big difference between immigrant workforce integration from the West (OECD countries) and from post-communist countries. 

Daniel Münich

The report traces the significant changes in the Czech labor market and in the profile of migrants arriving post-2000, with the view of significant institutional and policy changes resulting from the EU accession, as well as the influence of the economic crisis. This changing economic and political climate is reflected in some substantial fluctuations in immigrant´s economic outcomes. Nonetheless the data analyzed in this report suggest that the challenge of reducing obstacles to immigrant workers´ progression into more skilled employment is worth significant attention. 

The two major groupings of migrants to the Czech Republic—immigrants from post-communist countries and immigrants from Western and developed countries—have experienced different labor market trajectories. Immigrants from Western and developed countries do not seem to face obstacles to employment in high-skilled jobs (in fact, many of them are in the country because they are employed in high-skilled work).

The majority of migrants in the Czech labor force, however, come from former communist countries—notably Ukraine, Russia, and Vietnam—alongside smaller numbers from new EU Member States. Immigration from post-communist countries has brought some notable challenges in a country where dedicated immigrant integration policies are virtually nonexistent. On average, the employment rates of these migrants are roughly similar to those of native-born Czechs, but migrants from formerly communist countries are more likely to be employed in low-skilled jobs. There is also evidence of “brain waste” among this group—while they tend to be highly educated, their higher levels of education do not appear to have translated into highly skilled employment.

The report is available for download here and in the For Download section /below/
25. 4. 14

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