Tertiary graduates more mobile than the rest of the population
3.8% of European Union (EU) citizens of working age (20-64) were residing in another Member State than that of their citizenship in 2017. This share has increased from 2.5% ten years ago. The situation varies among Member States, ranging from 1.0% for working age citizens of Germany to 19.7% for citizens of Romania.
Tertiary graduates are generally more mobile than the rest of the population. 32.4% of mobile EU citizens have tertiary education, while the share for the entire EU population is 30.1%.
The employment rate of mobile EU citizens is also higher than that of the entire population: 76.1%, compared with the total EU employment rate of 72.1%.
These findings come from a publication issued by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.
The free movement of workers is a fundamental principle of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union. EU citizens are entitled to look for a job in another EU country, work there without a work permit, live there and enjoy equal treatment with nationals in access to employment, working conditions and all other social and tax advantages.
Romanians and Lithuanians are most mobile
In 2017, Romanian nationals of working age (20-64) residing abroad within the EU accounted for about a fifth (19.7%) of their co-nationals residing in Romania. The next largest shares were recorded by Lithuania (15.0%), Croatia (14.0%), Portugal (13.9%), Latvia (12.9%) and Bulgaria (12.5%).
The EU Member States with the smallest share of mobile nationals (out of the total-country population) are Germany (1.0%), the United Kingdom (1.1%), Sweden and France (both 1.3%).
Compared with 2007, the share of Romanian nationals living in another Member State has increased by 12.3 pp. Latvia (10.0 pp.), Lithuania (9.5 pp.) and Bulgaria (8.0 pp.) also registered a significant increase.
At the opposite end of the scale, the share of Cypriot nationals residing abroad decreased from 7.1% in 2007 to 3.9% in 2017.
Two thirds of the French living in another Member State have tertiary education
For most Member States, a higher share of working age nationals abroad have tertiary education than the home population. This is in particular the case for France (62.5% of the French living in another EU Member State have tertiary education, compared with 34.6% for the resident population of France) and Germany (54.5% and 26.7% respectively) where the difference reaches 28 pp.
In six Member States, however, it is the home population that has a higher share of tertiary education graduates: Bulgaria, Croatia, Portugal and the three Baltic countries Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania.
On the EU level, the share of people with tertiary education for working age citizens living outside their Member State exceeds the tertiary education share of the resident population by 2.3 pp.
8 out of 10 working age Slovenes in other Member States are employed
For most Member States, the employment rates of mobile EU citizens are higher than those of their co-nationals who live in their country of citizenship and higher than the EU average employment rate (72.1%).
The largest differences are in the cases of Greek (77.3% of Greeks in other EU countries are employed, compared with 57.8% of the respective population in Greece; a difference of 19.5 pp.), Croatia (79.8% and 63.6%, 16.2 pp.), Spanish (78.9% and 65.5%, 13.4 pp.), Italian (75.6% and 62.3%, 13.3 pp.) and Polish (81.8% and 70.9%, 10.9 pp.) citizens living abroad in the EU.
On EU level, the employment rate for working age citizens living outside their Member State exceeds the resident population employment rate by 4 pp.