Germany is now the world’s second destination for permanent migration after the US. The European economic powerhouse overtook the UK, Canada, and Australia, according to a survey by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
According to the recently-published OECD study entitled ‘Migration Policy Debates’, Germany jumped from eighth place in 2009 to second in 2012. The rate of permanent migration rose 38 percent in 2012 as the country attracted 400,000 permanent immigrants that year.
The bleak state of the European economy and the sovereign-debt crisis are among the causes of such a phenomenal increase in migration to Germany. A majority of immigrants are skilled workers from Southern and Eastern Europe.
According to Thomas Liebig, one of the study’s authors, “Such a strong increase from one year to another has been rarely observed in any major OECD country…We can clearly speak about a boom of migration to Germany without exaggeration.”
Germany is the Eurozone’s largest economy. In 2000, the country adapted policies to attract highly-skilled labor from outside Germany in order to boost its economy. Fourteen years later, however, the increasing immigration has turned into more of a liability.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel recently told the press that the country didn't want to pay unemployment benefits to EU citizens who moved to Germany for the sole purpose of looking for work."The EU isn't a social-welfare union," said Merkel.
Despite the rising anti-immigration wave across Europe, Merkel’s position seems secure as she managed to gain the highest number of German seats in the recent elections for the European Parliament.