Friday, March 18, 2005

More Dutch Immigrants Unemployed

Another tart rejoinder to those European politicians who claim that immigration from non-Western nations provides new workers desperately needed by European economies comes from the Netherlands where the most recent statistics indicate that immigrants in general, and non-Western immigrants in particular, remain unemployed at several times the rate of native Dutch.

Unemployment among people with a non-western background increased to 16 percent in 2004. The unemployment rate in 2003 was over 14 percent. Nevertheless the unemployment growth rate among foreigners is now slowing down. Unemployment among the indigenous population grew from 4.2 percent in 2003 to 5.2 percent in 2004. Unemployment has not been this high since 1997. Unemployment among Moroccans in particular rose dramatically.

Moroccan immigrants pose a particular problem, according to the statistics.
In 2004 unemployment did not increase equally among the various non-western groups. Among Moroccans unemployment has more than doubled since 2001, whereas unemployment growth was far less substantial among all other non-western ethnic groups. Because unemployment among Moroccans is rising at such a fast rate, it was the highest figure in 2004, if all groups with a foreign background are taken into account
Recall that Mohammed Bouyeri, the Muslim who viciously murdered Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh in broad daylight on an Amsterdam street last fall for critizing Islamic treatment of women, was the son of Moroccan immigrants and held dual Dutch and Moroccan citizenship even though he was raised and educated in Amsterdam.

Immigrants in the Netherlands are hardly alone in their plight; unemployment rates among native and immigrant populations remain high across most of Europe. This begs the question: why is Europe admitting so many non-Western immigrants when European economies cannot employ them?


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