NEWS IN SHORT

10 percent of Slovaks would work abroad

ONE in ten Slovaks have lived, worked or studied abroad in past years and at present the same percentage desire an opportunity to work in another country, according to a just published Eurobarometer survey that was based on polls taken in November and December 2009.

ONE in ten Slovaks have lived, worked or studied abroad in past years and at present the same percentage desire an opportunity to work in another country, according to a just published Eurobarometer survey that was based on polls taken in November and December 2009.

“Slovak citizens should more actively make use of the freedom of movement for work or studies abroad,” said Andrea Elschekova-Matisova, the head of the European Commission representation in Slovakia, as quoted by the SITA newswire. “In that way they can gain new skills or learn a new language which could be helpful in the future when they are looking to find a position in the Slovak labour market.”

Sixty percent of Europeans believe that work mobility is beneficial to European integration and almost half of EU citizens believe such mobility brings benefits to individuals, SITA reported.

The European Commission survey demonstrated that despite the positive perception of mobility, the actual numbers of mobile Europeans remain low, as only 2 percent of EU citizens currently live in a member state other than their home country and only 10 percent of Europeans have ever lived or worked abroad. However, one in five Europeans, according to the survey, has considered working in another country in the near future.

About one third of Europeans believe that it would be easier to find a job abroad than at home but there are big differences among European nations in the their perception of the chances for work abroad. In Slovakia two-thirds of the citizens believe that their chances are better abroad.

The motivation for moving to another EU country for work in the 12 ‘new’ EU member-states in central and eastern Europe is money. SITA reported that one in five Slovaks, Latvians, Lithuanians and one in four Czechs said they would move abroad only if they could earn three-times their current wage. On the other hand, the citizens of ‘old’ EU15 countries would be more inclined to move to seek a different life style or additional cultural factors.

The main reasons Europeans said they would not want to relocate was because of the loss of their homes and contacts with family and friends. The language barrier is perceived as the biggest obstacle in searching for work abroad.

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