Social integration and labour market access for asylum seekers in Kronoberg County in Sweden
Type of text: Paper
Published by: Department of Economics and Statistics, Linneaus University
Author: Magdalena Elmqvist
Available at: http://foliaoe.zut.edu.pl/pdf/346//oe2018.92.3.02.pdf
Short description of text
The paper investigates the reception of asylum seekers and their social and labour market integration in Kronoberg County. It includes a short history of migration to Sweden, including shifts in policy and legislation, a short description of the Swedish Migration Agency and its responsibilities and the asylum process in Sweden and what rights asylum-seekers are entitled to during this process, in terms of housing, financial support, education and health care. It further describes the “establishment package” introduced by the government in 2015, and the costs for municipalities in relation to asylum-seekers.
Most important results
– ‘The linchpin of the Swedish policy is targeting most asylum seeker and new arrivals into work or training after their time in the establishment within two years. To achieve this goal knowledge, skills and qualifications of asylum seekers must be taken advantage of in a better way to address the Swedish labour market. The ability to switch from asylum seekers to a labour migrant was introduced as a part of Swedish government policy to develop the labour migration of third-country nations and respond to labour market needs’ (p. 24).
– ‘In every municipalities of Kronoberg Country inhabitants with refugee’s background are more likely to be unemployed than other foreign-born immigrants within the time frame, and the result is not unique for Kronoberg County’ (p. 24).
– ‘Only 20–30 percent of asylum seekers inscribed in the Swedish asylum system have the certificate required the work ability. In areas that require certified skills asylum seekers can generally not work, so their choice is limited in practice to the unskilled sector. Languages requirements and the general unemployment rate of around 7.5 percent are the biggest impediments to getting a job’ (p. 25).
– ‘As Aldén and Hammarstedt’s (2016) findings suggest, about 9.8 percent of the refugees who arrived in Sweden in 2005 found employment in 2006, respectively 14 percent of those who immigrated in 2006 and 9 percent among those who arrived in 2007. The employment rate increases with time spent in Sweden. Five years upon arrival about 39 percent of the refugees who arrived in 2005 were employed, more than 30 percent of those who immigrated in 2006 and 34 percent among those who came in 2007. Among highly educated refugees who arrived in 2005 about 49 percent were employed after staying in Sweden for five years, and after seven years nearly 60 percent found employment. As it comes to refugees with nine-year compulsory schooling or shorter formal education, 37 percent landed jobs after five years and 48 percent after seven years’ (p. 27).
– ‘Many comparative studies and time-series data suggest that refugee migration has a positive or at least neutral long-term effect on a host community’s economy. According to Delmi report, Swedish economic growth will increase in the coming years up to one percentage point above expectations if the increase in immigration remains at a much lower level than forecasted in 2000 (Malmberg et al. 2016). Delmi report’s findings prove that fifteen years of high immigration rate have led to an increased working age population thus providing the necessary conditions for significantly faster economic growth than an alternative scenario with lower net immigration. Higher economic growth may lead to increasing consumption and higher tax revenues. During the 2020s the tax revenues may be significantly higher than they would have been without increased immigration in recent years’ (p. 27).
Based on Swedish and European Union’s acts, directives and regulations concerning asylum seekers and new arrivals.