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Ethnic German Migration since 1989 - Results and Perspectives/ Aussiedler seit 1989 - Bilanz und Perspektiven

  • Zimmermann, Klaus F.

    ()

    (IZA and University of Bonn)

Among all European countries, Germany absorbs by far the largest number of immigrants. But to date, the German government has yet to adopt a system that will effectively control the influx of foreigners. The immigration of Ethnic Germans from Eastern Europe, which is due to historical events and therefore constitutionally guaranteed, is a special case. It is marked by selection criteria (language tests), de facto quotas, and mobility restrictions. Although the immigration of foreigners and Ethnic Germans produces overall positive effects, the recent trend has been more problematic, especially as the economic situation in Germany deteriorated. Ethnic Germans are basically facing the same difficulties with social and economic integration as foreigners. A majority of young Ethnic Germans have no cultural or language ties to Germany. Insufficient language skills and the lack of adequate education and training often limit their labor market prospects to simple tasks and physical labor. Over the last few years, unemployment among Ethnic Germans in the workforce has increased. This study concludes that Germany needs a well-directed immigration policy in order to make the immigration process transparent and predictable. This would also lead to a better acceptance of foreigners and Ethnic Germans in society. A German immigration law could be based on the existing structures that apply to the influx of Ethnic Germans.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 50.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: Aug 1999
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Jahrbuch für Wirtschaftsgeschichte / Economic History Yearbook, 2000, 1(2000), 225-237; see IZA Reprints 50/00
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp50
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  1. Bauer Thomas & Zimmermann F., 1996. "Gastarbeiter und Wirtschaftsentwicklung im Nachkriegsdeutschland," Jahrbuch für Wirtschaftsgeschichte / Economic History Yearbook, De Gruyter, vol. 37(2), pages 73-108, December.
  2. Bauer, Thomas & Zimmermann, Klaus F, 1995. "Integrating the East: The Labour Market Effects of Immigration," CEPR Discussion Papers 1235, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Thomas A. Dunn & Michaela Kreyenfeld & Mary E. Lovely, 1997. "Communist Human Capital in a Capitalist Labor Market: The Experience of East German and Ethnic German Immigrants to West Germany," Vierteljahrshefte zur Wirtschaftsforschung / Quarterly Journal of Economic Research, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 66(1), pages 151-158.
  4. Bauer, Thomas & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 1997. "Unemployment and wages of ethnic Germans," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(Supplemen), pages 361-377.
  5. Schmidt, Christoph M., 1997. "Immigrant performance in Germany: Labor earnings of ethnic German migrants and foreign guest-workers," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(Supplemen), pages 379-397.
  6. Klaus F. Zimmermann, 1995. "Tackling the European Migration Problems," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(2), pages 45-62, Spring.
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