Second generation immigrants in the EU generally well integrated – but mixed picture across Member States
Friday, 28 October 2016
In EU as a whole, second generation immigrants has higher educational attainment rates than their peers with a native background. Second generation immigrants with at least one parent born in the EU has also a slightly higher employment rate than native-born with a native background. However, the pattern at EU level masks important differences at Member State level.
These figures on the integration of immigrants in the EU can be found in on-line statistical overview published today (28 October) by EU´s statistics office Eurostat. The statistics is based on data collected by Eurostat from the 2014 Labour Force Survey on “Labour market situation of immigrants and their immediate descendants”.
The focus of the report, which cover topics on demographic characteristics, labour market integration and level of skills and qualifications, is to compare the five sub-groups resulting from these divisions.
The population is divided into three main ‘migration status’ groups based on country of birth of the respondent and of their parents: ‘Native-born with native background’; ‘Second-generation immigrants’ (native-born population with at least one foreign-born parent) and ‘First-generation immigrants’ (foreign-born population).
For the migrant population there is a further split based on their ‘EU’ or ‘non-EU origins’.
Thus, the population of ‘first-generation immigrants’ is divided according to country of birth of the respondent into ‘first-generation immigrants’ born in another EU Member State (i.e. ‘EU origins’) and ‘first-generation immigrants’ born outside the EU (i.e. ‘non-EU origins’).
For the population of ‘second-generation immigrants’, as they all are born in the reporting country that automatically belongs to the EU, their origins are based on the country of birth of their parents.
Thus, the group has been split into ‘second-generation immigrants’ with ‘EU origins’ (at least one parent is born in the EU, including in the reporting country) and ‘second-generation immigrants’ of ‘non-EU origins’ (both parents are born outside the EU).
The tertiary educational attainment rate is defined as the percentage of the population of a given age group who has successfully completed tertiary studies (e.g. university, higher technical institution, etc.).
The employment rateis calculated as employed persons as a percentage of the same age population.
In 2014, in the EU as a whole, second generation immigrants aged 25-54 with both an EU background and a non- EU background had higher tertiary educational attainment rates (38.5% and 36.2% respectively) than their peers with a native background, for whom the share was 30.9%. Second generation immigrants also had higher shares than first generation immigrants either born in another EU Member State (33.3%) or a non-EU country (29.4%).
However, the pattern at EU level masks important differences at Member State level, where the size and direction of gaps differ significantly. Thus, in Portugal, Cyprus, Malta, Hungary, the United Kingdomand Italy the proportions of highly educated second generation immigrants were 5 or more percentage points higher than for persons with a native background.
In contrast, in Belgium, Luxembourg, Latvia, the Czech Republicand Finland, the proportion of tertiary educated second generation immigrants was at least 5 percentage points lower than their counterparts with a native background.
In 2014, in the EUas a whole, 81.1% of second generation immigrants aged 25-54 with at least one parent born in the EU were employed. This rate was slightly above that for the native-born with a native background (78.6%, 2.5 pp difference) and 7.1 pp higher than for second generation immigrants having two parents born outside the EU (74.0%).
Second generation immigrants with EU background also had higher employment rates than first generation immigrants born in another EU Member State (4.0 pp difference) or in a non-EU country (15.6 pp).
In 2014, in Member States for which data is available, second generation immigrants had similar or even higher employment rate than persons with a native background in Bulgaria, Luxembourg, Portugal, Hungary, Finland and Poland.
In contrast, the employment rates of second generation immigrants were at least 5 percentage points lower than their counterparts with a native background in Belgium, Croatia, Latvia, Malta, Slovenia, Austria and Germany.
The figures will no doubt serve as input into the current debate on the refugee crisis, the economic impact of migration to EU and measures of successful integration.