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The Effect of the 2004 and 2007 EU Enlargement on the Spanish Labour Market

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  • de la Rica, Sara

    () (University of the Basque Country)

Abstract

The 2004 and 2007 EU enlargement has led to a significant increase in the immigration flow to Spain. Individuals from the new-EU-12 countries accounted for no more than 10% of the whole Spanish immigrant population in 2004, but by 2008 they accounted for almost 20% of the total flow of immigrants. As of 2008, immigrants from Bulgaria, Poland and Rumania account for 97 percent of new-EU-12 immigrants. These immigrants are younger, and the vast majority of them are educated to secondary level. Their employment rate is higher than that of natives, but they are hit harder by unemployment than natives. Our results point to two conclusions from a policy prospective: first, the EU enlargement has significantly improved legal immigration from new-EU-12 countries. Second, the lack of employment assimilation in terms of job quality for workers from the new-EU-12 countries may discourage the entrance of highly qualified workers. The Spanish authorities should provide on-the-job training for these qualified workers so that they can find adequate job prospects in Spain and decide to stay.

Suggested Citation

  • de la Rica, Sara, 2009. "The Effect of the 2004 and 2007 EU Enlargement on the Spanish Labour Market," IZA Discussion Papers 4104, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp4104
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Chiswick, Barry R, 1978. "The Effect of Americanization on the Earnings of Foreign-born Men," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(5), pages 897-921, October.
    2. Pieter Bevelander & Helena Skyt Nielsen, 2001. "Declining employment success of immigrant males in Sweden: Observed or unobserved characteristics?," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 14(3), pages 455-471.
    3. Borjas, George J, 1985. "Assimilation, Changes in Cohort Quality, and the Earnings of Immigrants," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 3(4), pages 463-489, October.
    4. Ken Clark & Joanne Kathryn Lindley, 2005. "Immigrant Labour Market Assimilation and Arrival Effects: Evidence from the Labour Force Survey," Working Papers 2005004, The University of Sheffield, Department of Economics, revised Jan 2005.
    5. Amelie Constant & Douglas S. Massey, 2003. "Self-selection, earnings, and out-migration: A longitudinal study of immigrants to Germany," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 16(4), pages 631-653, November.
    6. Jennifer Hunt, 2004. "Are migrants more skilled than non-migrants? Repeat, return, and same-employer migrants," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 37(4), pages 830-849, November.
    7. Dustmann, Christian, 2000. "Temporary Migration and Economic Assimilation," IZA Discussion Papers 186, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    assimilation; immigration; EU enlargement;

    JEL classification:

    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers

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