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Foreigners less likely to get jobs than French
Foreigners in France are more likely ti turn up in queues at job centres it seems, than locals. Photo: AFP

Foreigners less likely to get jobs than French

Published on: 01 Aug 2014 16:21 CET

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You can’t read an article about France these days without hearing about record unemployment in the country.

But it appears rising levels of joblessness has hit foreigners harder than French nationals and EU citizens.

A study released by EU statistics office Eurostat showed that French nationals aged between 20 and 64 enjoy an employment rate of 70.6 percent.

That’s well below the rate of 81.3 percent for Swedish nationals and Germany’s 78.7 percent, Although it's above the EU average which stands at 68.9 percent.

However non-EU immigrants in the country are lagging behind natives by almost 15 percentage points, suggesting serious discrepancies for foreigners gaining access to France’s labour market.

For foreigners, including those from other EU member states living in France, the average employment rate drops to 55.9 percent, six percentage points lower than the EU-wide figure of 61.9.

But if only non-EU citizens in France are counted, the employment rate drops down to just 48.6 percent, a discrepancy of 22 percentage points when compared with locals. For EU citizens in France the situation was much rosier as they had 70.1 percent job rate.

The figures suggest non-EU citizens have a much harder time gaining access to the job market than locals or even EU citizens from other member states.

In nearly all EU Member States, the employment rate of nationals was higher than for non-EU  citizens, except in Cyprus (66.8% for nationals compared with 74.3% for non-EU citizens), the Czech Republic (72.4% compared with 79.5%), Lithuania (69.8% compared with 70.8%) and Italy (59.5% compared with 60.1%). 

Ben McPartland(ben.mcpartland@thelocal.com)

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