Montag, 22. Juni 2009

Migration in Germany, Austria, Switzerland

Apparently, Germany struggled to achieve a positive migration balance in 2008: Immigration and emigration were roughly equal in size (detailed figures aren't out yet, though).

In contrast, Austria recorded an immigration surplus of 0.4 % of population (and a balance of +10,000 with Germany), and Switzerland announced a surplus of 0.7 % (couldn't find the balance with Germany, but I'm sure it's at least in the +10,000 to +20,000 range). Switzerland's total population increased by a massive 1.4 % (apart from immigration, most of the growth is due to "status change" from short-term residents to "real" residents, i.e. actual net immigration is even higher than the officially stated 0.7 % due to increase and subsequent reclassification of short-term residents).

It is striking that Austria and Switzerland appear to be attractive for immigrants (many of which are Germans), whereas Germany isn't.

(By the way, the frequently heard point that Germany has a negative migratory balance regarding German citizens and there "loses its own citizens" is probably not very instructive: As most Germans live in Germany, and comparatively few Germans live abroad, it's entirely natural that more Germans leave the country than come back. Even Switzerland with its huge overall inwards migration recorded a net emigration of 6,000 Swiss citizens in 2008: adjusted for population size, that's equal to a net emigration of 70,000 Germans...)

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