There is no doubt that immigration will stay high on the political agenda in the coming years – and it is important that the issue is debated on the basis of solid evidence.

A chapter in the recently published Employment and Social Developments in Europe 2015 review tries to provide some much-needed facts and figures.

It looks at opportunities and challenges ofmobility and migration in the EU from the angle of economic growth: To what extent do intra-EU mobility and third-country migration contribute to growth today and what contribution could we hope for in the future? The main determinant for this is naturally their labour market performance.

How well are mobile EU citizens and migrants doing on their host country's labour market?

The chart above shows the odds (or the chance) for foreign-born people of being in employment, rather than being unemployed or inactive, compared to people born in the country. It considers four groups of foreign-born people. The first three groups consist of people who crossed intra-EU borders:

  • those from the 15 'old' Member States which made up the EU before the 2004 enlargement (EU-15);
  • those from the 10 Member States which joined in 2004 (EU-10, which includes notably Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia);
  • and those from Romania, Bulgaria and Croatia (EU-3).
  • In addition to the EU citizens, the fourth group are migrants who came from third countries, meaning countries outside of the European Union.

The performance of the native-born population is normalised to 1. The blue bar reflects the situation that is actually observed. If the blue bar is above the black line, this implies that this particular group of foreign-born people is more likely than the native-born to be in employment; if it is below, the chances of being in employment are lower than for the native-born.

Find more here.