Politics Life at 28

Employment: Germany welcomes working immigrants

23 December 2011

“Welcome to Germany”, announces Handelsblatt. “For the first time in decades, the number of people arriving in Germany has exceeded the number of those leaving.” The cause is rising unemployment in many EU countries, which has come at a time when Germany is going through a “boom” that attracts skilled workers from abroad. For many years the German economy suffered from the lack of a “culture of welcome” in the country, which “at best gave immigrants the impression that they were “tolerated”. Now “the euro crisis has ushered in the change requested by economists,” writes the pleased business newspaper. According to the Federal Statistical Office, in the first half of 2011 the number of Spanish immigrants rose by 49% over the previous year, and the number of Greeks by 84%. In total, 435,000 people arrived in Germany in the first half of this year, up 20% over 2010. In the same period, 30,000 emigrated. “The time when Germany was a country of emigration appears to be over,” concludes Handelsblatt.