One in three migrants in the EU are over-qualified for their jobs

One in three foreign-born persons aged 25 to 54
overqualified for their job, compared with one person in five among the native-born.

Over the years, migration has had an impact on the composition of European societies. In 2010, foreign-born persons accounted for 9.4% of the EU27 population. Their socio-economic situation was in general less favourable than for native-born persons.

In 2008 in the EU27, the unemployment rate of foreign-born persons aged 25-54 was higher than for native-born persons in this age group (10% compared with 6%). When employed, foreign-born persons often have more difficulties to find a job corresponding to their education level. This can be measured using an overqualification rate, which refers to the percentage of persons with a high level of education who have a job which does not
correspond to this level. In the EU27 in 2008, foreign-born persons aged 25-54 registered a significantly higher overqualification rate than native-born persons (34% compared with 19%).

These figures come from a publication issued by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union. This publication looks at a broad range of characteristics of migrants aged from 25 to 54 living in the European Union and EFTA countries. It looks separately at foreign-born persons, foreign citizens and second generation migrants.

It covers the socio-economic situation of migrants including labour market status, income distribution and poverty. Reasons for migration and length of residence are also examined.

Higher rates of unemployment and overqualification for foreign-born persons

In 2008, the unemployment rate of foreign-born persons aged 25-54 was higher than for native-born persons in this age group in all Member States for which data are available, except Greece and Hungary. Particularly high gaps were registered in Belgium (14% for foreign-born compared with 5% for native-born), Sweden (11% and 3%), Finland (11% and 5%), Spain (15% and 9%), France (12% and 6%) and Germany (12% and 6%).

As regards employment, foreign-born persons aged 25-54 registered a significantly higher overqualification rate than native-born persons in 2008 in all Member States for which data are available. The difference was particularly marked in Greece (62% for foreign-born compared with 18% for native-born), Italy (50% and 13%), Spain (58% and 31%), Cyprus (53% and 27%), Estonia (47% and 22%) and Sweden (31% and 11%).

One in three foreign-born person aged 25 to 54 at risk of poverty or social exclusion

In 2008 in the EU27, 31% of the foreign-born aged 25-54 were assessed to be at risk of poverty or social exclusion, following the criteria set by the Europe 2020 strategy. The native-born registered a lower rate of 20%. This pattern was observed in all Member States for which data are available, except Hungary and Lithuania. Particularly high gaps were recorded in Belgium (36% for foreign-born compared with 13% for native born), Sweden (32% and 10%), Greece (45% and 23%), France (34% and 14%), Austria (32% and 13%), Finland (31% and 13%) and Denmark (31% and 13%).

Foreign-born persons are also in a less favourable situation with regard to housing conditions. In 2008 in the EU27, foreign-born persons aged 25-54 were more likely to live in overcrowded dwellings than native-born persons (23% compared with 19%). The differences were particularly high in Austria (40% for foreign-born compared with 9% for native born), Greece (49% and 26%), Slovenia (61% and 41%), France (26% and 8%) and Denmark (21% and 6%).

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