Stock of Polish citizens staying temporarily abroad

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4. Migration from Poland

4.3. Stock of Polish citizens staying temporarily abroad

According to the Central Statistical Office of Poland, the number of permanent Polish inhabitants residing temporarily abroad longer than 3 months estimated for December 31st, 2013 was 2.196 million people, i.e. 3% higher than the preceding year. Most of the emigrants should be considered long-term – ¾ have stayed in the receiving countries for 12 months or more. Europe (and within Europe specifically the EU Member States) remains the most attractive destination for migrants from Poland. At the end of 2012 around 86% of all temporary emigrants resided in a European country (around 81% in an EU Member State) – see Table 4.

Table 4. Polish citizens staying abroad for longer than two months (three months since 2007) (in thousands) and percentage changes as compared with previous year, 2002-2013

Destination Population

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Percentage change as compared with previous year**

Total . . 45 34.5 16.4 -2.6 -5 -4.8 3 3.4 3.1

Europe . . 55.8 34.2 19.6 -2 -6.5 -4.5 4.1 3.5 4.1

EU27 . . 56 32.5 20 -2.2 -7.1 -4.9 3.9 3 4.0

Austria . . 66.7 36 14.7 2.6 -10 -19.4 -13.8 12 7.1

Belgium . . 61.5 33.3 10.7 6.5 3 32.4 4.4 2.1 2.1

Cyprus . . . . . 0 -25 0 0 -33.3 -50.0

Czech Republic

. . . . . 25 -10 -22.2 0 14.3 0.0

Denmark . . . . . 11.8 5.3 -5 10.5 9.5 8.7

Finland . . 75 328.6 33.3 0 -25 0 -33.3 0 50.0

France . . 46.7 11.4 12.2 1.8 7.1 0 3.3 1.6 0.0

Germany . . 11.7 4.7 8.9 0 -5.1 -5.4 6.8 6.4 12.0

Greece . . 30.8 17.6 0 0 -20 0 -6.3 -6.7 -14.3

Ireland . . 406.7 57.9 66.7 -10 -22.2 -6.4 -8.4 -1.7 -2.5

Italy . . 18.6 21.4 2.4 1.1 0 4.5 2.2 3.2 -1.0

Netherlands . . 87 27.9 78.2 10.2 -9.3 -6.1 3.3 2.1 6.2

Portugal . . 20 66.7 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.0

Spain . . 42.3 18.9 81.8 3.8 1.2 -42.9 -16.7 -7.5 -8.1

Sweden . . 54.5 47.1 8 7.4 6.9 6.5 9.1 5.6 5.3

United Kingdom

. . 126.7 70.6 19 -5.8 -8.5 -2.5 7.8 1.9 0.8

Other European Countries

. . 50 100 8.3 3.1 11.9 4 9 12.9 6.3

Norway . . . . . 5.6 18.4 11.1 12 16.1 9.2

* as for the end of a given year, ** 2002-2004 changes not reported due to lack of full data comparability

Source: CSO 2014.

Again the ranking of the counties with temporarily residing Polish citizens starts with Great Britain (642 thousand people) and Germany (560 thousand). Notably, the number of Polish emigrants in Germany and in Norway has increased by 12% and 9%, respectively, in relation to the preceding year (Table 4 and Figure 7). In the first case the increase may result from the relatively short time which has passed since the opening of the German labour market and therefore its relative insatiability with employees from the New Member States; and in both cases, a non-negligible factor was the relatively good state of economy (stable GDP growth since the year 2010).

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Figure 7. Stock of Polish migrants staying temporarily abroad by destination country, percentage change as compared to previous year (Ireland – right axis, other countries – left axis)

Source: CSO 2014.

The data presented above documents the dynamics and changing patterns of the post-enlargement migration. First of all, it points to the stabilization of the number of Polish citizens staying abroad since 2007 (peak period with around 6.6% of the total population residing abroad). The increases recorded in the years 2011-2013 were much smaller in size than observed in the first post-accession years: in 2013 the number of migrants increased by 66 thousand (3.1%) as compared to the previous year, in the years 2005-2006 the annual changes were higher than 30%. The recent changes were mostly due to an increase in the number of persons residing in three countries: Germany (12% change as compared to previous year), Norway (9.2%) and the Netherlands (6.2%), Table 4 and Figure 7.

Table 4 and Figure 8 show that – according to the CSO estimates – the structure of destination countries remains relatively stable with the majority of Polish migrants residing in the EU-27 countries (81% in 2013). Similarly, the ranking of the most important destinations does not change – see Figure 8.

2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013

EU27

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Figure 8. Stock of Polish migrants staying temporarily abroad by destination country, 2002-2013, as % of the total

Source: CSO 2014.

Since 2006, the United Kingdom remains the most important destination country which in 2013 was hosting around 29% of all temporary migrants from Poland. Nonetheless, CSO estimates point to the growing importance of Germany (25.5% of all emigrants in 2013 as compared to 23.5% in 2012).

These two major destinations were followed by Ireland (5.2% of all migrants), the Netherlands (4.7%), Italy (4.4%), Norway (3.2%), and France (2.9%).

Data from the Labour Force Survey also confirm certain stabilization. They indicate that in 2013 and in the first quarter of 2014 the share of permanent residents of Poland temporarily absent for more than 12 months fluctuated from 71% to 76% (in the moment of Polish accession to EU it was only 36%, Figure 9). It is worth remembering that LFS data cannot be the basis for estimating the number of permanent Polish residents abroad – it is survey data and the information about the absent members of a given household is reported to CSO interviewers by other household members. In a situation when the whole household resides abroad (especially when it is a one person household), there is nobody in the sampled household to give such information. If we accept the estimates from the last census (2011), we should recognize about a half (48%) of households from which temporary emigrants originate as ones which reside abroad as whole households; one in five of them (21%) consists only of one person (CSO 2013).

0%

10%

20%

30%

40%

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70%

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90%

100%

2002 (Census) 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013

Germany United Kingdom Ireland Netherlands Italy Spain Other

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Figure 9. Permanent citizens of Poland staying temporarily* abroad by sex (in thous., left axis) and share of persons staying abroad for more than 12 months (in %, right axis)

* For longer than 2 months (till 2006) or 3 months (since 2006).

** Since 2008 a temporary migrant is defined as a persons whose planned and actual stay abroad lasts 12 months or longer.

Source: Own elaboration based on the LFS data.

Taking into consideration the reservation made above, we may conclude that settlement in the destination country with one’s whole family becomes a more and more frequent strategy of temporary emigrants which remains invisible in official register data. Three facts confirm this. Firstly, since 2007 we are observing an increase in the percentage of temporary emigrants staying abroad for at least one year, which reduces the odds that they will come back to the home country. Secondly, we are observing a significant decrease of the stock of temporary emigrants measured by LFS while there are no changes in the estimates of the stock on the basis of other sources (data from receiving countries included, compare Table 4), what can be indicative of family reunification processes and the departures of the members of the household who had been left behind. Thirdly, the data from the receiving countries (especially Great Britain) indicate that the number of births among Poles had grown dynamically and remain at a high level. In 2013 a record of 21.3 thousand births were given in England and Wales by mothers born in Poland7. All the mentioned arguments support the conclusion

7 In the whole post-accession period in England and Wales almost 139 thousand children of mothers born in Poland were born, see: ONS (2014). This increasing trend should be interpreted in the context of the decrease of registered births in Poland in recent years.

0,0

2004 2005 2006 2007 2008** 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014

Females Males Share of persons staying abroad for 12 months and longer

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that temporary migrants who officially remain permanent residents of Poland are in fact gradually settling permanently in the destination countries.

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