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Report of WEI: Ukrainian immigration in Poland in the context of the labour market situation


Report of WEI: Ukrainian immigration in Poland in the context of the labour market situation


Currently, Europe faces enormous demographic challenges. Birth rates of any of the European countries don’t sustain generation replacement. A very logical conclusion derives from this fact – Europe will gradually depopulate in the coming years. It also concerns Poland where this problem is especially intensified and visible and might have numerous negative outcomes.

Warsaw Enterprise Institute in cooperation with Kolegium Europy Wschodniej prepared the Report “Ukrainian immigration in Poland. Analysis of the phenomenon in the context of the labour market situation”. The research investigated the phenomenon of immigration and its influence on the situation in the labour market. Current political and economic situation has opened for Poland a source of immigrants willing to take up work and, due to the cultural similarities, adapting to our environment very easily. They are the immigrants from Ukraine who come to Poland in great numbers. This is caused by both: the economic and the political reasons. Their number in Poland has been estimated to about one million but taking all the probability and analyses of the readiness of employing foreigners into account, we should consider even higher figures. Ukrainians work hard and they earn enough money not only to support themselves, but also to spend it on consumption.

Unfortunately, Poland has obviously missed its great chance pending till 2017. For the Ukrainians, Poland – geographically and culturally close, and much more economically developed – was the natural first-choice country at the time when they were obliged to have visas to travel to the European Union. Regrettably, the decision-makers did not manage to establish a uniform policy on the absorption of immigrants. They forgot that the “flow capacity” of a country’s administrative and bureaucratic system is crucial during such a serious crisis and such a big group of people willing to immigrate and work. The historical chance has been thrown away. The only thing we can do today is to try to compete with the West European countries and other countries of our region. It is indispensable, to maintain the increasing tendency of the Ukrainian immigration to Poland.

Taking this into account Warsaw Enterprise Institute proposes maximal simplification of the procedures concerning legalisation of labour performed by the Ukrainians in Poland, and restraining from introducing legislative changes hampering their employment. Moreover, we recommend introduction of a wide abolition encompassing all of the Ukrainians currently working in Poland – a significant part of them is being employed illegally at the moment. We also propose the employment bureaus to take responsibility of some of the initiatives to match the employers and entrepreneurs with employees from Ukraine who wish to relocate to Poland. Ukraińcami Such solution seems to be very much needed in the context of the current situation in the labour market.

Report of WEI: Ukrainian immigration in Poland in the context of the labour market situation

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