>New EU states: Czech open door finds few takers


The same bulletin reports large increases in the number of Bulgarian and Romanians working (legally) in the Czech Republic (71 and 65 per cent increases) since January. However, the two new EU states’ nationals make up a mere 2.5% of the 209, 300 foreigners (EU and non-EU I presume – not sure if that includes Slovaks) working legally in the country. Unlike the UK, the Czech Republic imposes no restrictions on Bulgarian and Romanian citizens working in the country, assuming (seemingly correctly)that bureaucracy, limited existing contacts and the language barrier would prevent any large influx.
According to a recent World Bank report on ageing populations, however, the Czech Republic needs – amongst other strategies – relatively high levels of immigration, mainly because of high existing levels of employment of over 50s and pensioners. The Bank suggests Central Asian states of the FSU as a logic source of such migrants (relatively young populations; proximity and knowledge of Slavonic language (Russian) presumably being the rationale). The report doesn’t, however, address the political feasibility of such migration, which, I suspect, would in a Czech context be low and diminishing.

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