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Economic crisis sends Slovaks home

THE NUMBER of Slovaks working abroad continued to decrease last year. The economic crisis was identified as being behind the trend, which was examined in a report on migration by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). The OECD scrutinised inflow of immigrants and outflow of emigrants for 31 OECD member countries, the SITA newswire wrote.

THE NUMBER of Slovaks working abroad continued to decrease last year. The economic crisis was identified as being behind the trend, which was examined in a report on migration by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). The OECD scrutinised inflow of immigrants and outflow of emigrants for 31 OECD member countries, the SITA newswire wrote.

It found that the number of Slovaks working abroad had been decreasing since 2007. While 186,000 Slovaks worked abroad then, by the beginning of 2009 the number had fallen to 125,000.

During 2009, Slovaks continued returning, especially from their ‘traditional destinations’, i.e. the Czech Republic and Great Britain.

So-called positive migration, i.e. inflow of new people into the country, continued to grow during 2008. This was due to the higher number of immigrants, up from 14,899 to 16,500, compared to 3,300 people leaving the country, up slightly from 2,000. However, these are only official numbers gleaned from the national statistics office based on changes of permanent address by individual people and experts estimate that the number of Slovaks living outside their homeland could be several times higher.

With regards to the overall view of countries in the OECD, the economic recession in member countries was found to have slowed migration and reduced the inflow of people migrating from less developed countries. In 2008 as many as 4.4 million immigrants moved into OECD countries, representing an annual decrease of 6 percent.

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