cities&refugees_D15

Most European countries have been reluctant to take refugees. Some, however, have been actively encouraging them to come. For example, unlike several EU members, the Portuguese government has actually offered to take many more refugees than it was asked to. Yet the refugees themselves seem unenthusiastic; Portugal has offered to host 10,000, but by May 2016 had only taken in a couple of hundred (though more have arrived since then).

In order to take a closer look at the local impact of the refugee crisis, we launched our ‘Cities & Refugees‘ project – aimed at fostering a Europe-wide dialogue between citizens, refugees and asylum seekers, NGOs, politicians, and European leaders. The emphasis will be on connecting local, everyday life at the city level to decisions made in Brussels and national capitals.

This week we’re looking at Lisbon, Portugal. Few refugees seem keen to settle in Portugal, and part of the reason might be that joblessness remains high: 12.3% in 2016. Compare that to 4.3% in Germany, and it’s clear that finding work will be easier in Deutschland. Is it wrong for refugees to prefer to go to countries which have stronger economies?

Curious to know more about refugee redistribution? We’ve put together some facts and figures in the infographic below (click for a bigger version).15-E4C-Refugee-redistribution

We had a comment from Hans, who says he’s seen lots of media reports that refugees don’t want to go to countries like Portugal. They want to go to countries with lots of jobs and with generous welfare systems, like Germany and Sweden. Is that true?

To get a reaction, we took Hans’ comment to Marina Watson Pelaez, a freelance journalist working in Lisbon and London. What would she say?

MarinaYes, that’s true, because most refugees have a set plan and that is to go to a rich country like Germany, where there are higher hopes of getting a job and perhaps more economic support. Many refugees have never heard of Portugal, and those who have know that the country is undergoing economic difficulties. They also understandably want to go to countries where they know people or have family members.

For another reaction, we also took Hans’ comment to Paul Ames, a freelance journalist who has written in Politico about the reluctance of refugees to come to Portugal. How would he respond?

pamesEstimates vary, but so far there are suspected to be around 1,100 refugees here, which is way below the 10,000 that the Portuguese government has offered to take in. Once again, the numbers are a little bit unsure, but there are reports saying that of those who have come in, around 200 have left because they don’t want to stay here.

There are a number of reasons for this. Obviously, Portugal doesn’t have the same kind of job market that Germany has, for example. A lot of refugees who come here don’t speak Portuguese. It’s not so easy for them to get jobs…

We also had a comment from Nelson, asking for more refugees to come to Portugal, because they still believe in solidarity and have hope. But is Portugal being so generous precisely because it knows that so few refugees will actually take it up on its offer? We put this (slightly cynical) question to Marina Watson Pelaez. What would she say?

MarinaI don’t think so. Portugal’s population and birthrate is declining, with thousands of people emigrating every year to find work abroad. So the government wants to attract refugees here to help solve that problem. Also, I think the new administration led by the Socialist party (and backed by the Left Bloc and Communist party in parliament) has a welcoming attitude towards refugees because it makes sense given the country’s pro-EU and solidarity stance . Portugal has also blamed the EU for a lack of coordination.

Finally, how would Paul Ames answer this question?

pamesIt’s a very interesting question, and one I’ve put myself to Portuguese government ministers. It is true that Portugal earned some political kudos in Brussels for being so generous on this at a time when many countries in Europe were closing the door, particularly back in 2015 and early 2016. Portugal made this very generous offer which went down very well, especially in Germany. So, yes, there is a political side to this.

Having said that, the support for the open door policy is pretty much across the board on the political spectrum here. It goes from the far-left parties to conservative parties, where the Catholic church is quite influential – and the church has also had a very open policy on bringing refugees in. So, it’s been quite widespread. To what extent the offer was made with the knowledge that not so many people would be coming here, it’s difficult to say. But the government is continuing to bring in refugees. More have been coming, as I’ve said, there’s about 1,100 here at the moment, and they have generally been making a strong effort – not just from the government, also I think from civil society, the media, and church organisations – to welcome and integrate the refugees…

Is it wrong for refugees to want to go where jobs are? Why have so few refugees gone to countries like Portugal? And can the Portuguese government afford to be very generous on refugees, knowing that few will accept its offer? Or is it a genuine, principled stance the country is taking? Let us know your thoughts and comments in the form below and we’ll take them to policymakers and experts for their reactions!
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The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents which reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsi­ble for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.



215 comments Post a commentcomment

What do YOU think?

  1. José Bessa da Silva

    Of couse not! But then they are no longer refugees. Greece has no jobs for instance, refugees did everything to get there safe. They were refugees up to that point. In there some were deported, others helped. Those helped want to go to Germany. They became immigrantes. Their main goal is no longer safety but money. This is why I think the refugee status should be “temporary”. Once the treat in your country is gone, they are gone as well. Of couse there would have to be exceptions, like life long threats, elderly people, etc. PS: Unlike what the woman said, Portugal does not have a very pro-EU attitude. It is one of the countries with highest eurocepticism rate in the EU and it’s current government is supported by not 1 but 3 anti-euro and anti-eu parties. One of them is right now doing a campaign to leave the EU. Let’s cut the propaganda crap shall we?
    12/05/2017 Sandra Batista, Coordinator of the Office of Events, Communications, and Information at the Portuguese government’s High Commission for Migration, has responded to this comment.

    • Ricardo Pinhal

      Can u provide evidence of this supposed higher proportion of Portuguese euroceptics?

    • Παυλος Χαραλαμπους

      I don’t think it can work just imagine a refuge child growing up like an European and when is a teenager or adult been deported to a country that doesn’t know or even worse doesn’t see as his own country!! Just imagine all the Europeans how left their countries during WWII being deported from united states or Australia back to post WWII Europe. . does it makes you any sense? ?

    • José Bessa da Silva

      Yes, it does make sense. Obviouly not 3 generations after. I’m talking about first generations and their dependents.

    • Charles Buhagiar

      Why does it have to be the EU which has to take the burden of refugees and that of forced economic migration? There are far more richer countries which can provide shelter and assistance to refugees and jobs to migrants. Some of these countries share similar language, culture, religion and way of life so it would be easier for them to integrate without disstabilizing the host country’s society.

    • Ricardo Pinhal

      Come on, be serious! An article of opinion of 4 years ago, right in the beginning of the austerity measures! Even I was an euroceptic back then!

    • José Bessa da Silva

      That is not an opinion article, that is actual data and us eurocepticis only increased. Finally, being that the EU has changed nothing in it’s ways, if then you were euroceptic andnow you are not, im sorry to tell you but you’re what is called an “useful fool”. Now, the EC is paying for a campaign against eurocepticism in Portugal. You do no pay for a campaign to be made in a place that is already in favour of what you’re capaigning for. The EC is paying for that because the portuguese have had enough with the EU as the stats clearly show. https://www.publico.pt/2017/03/29/politica/noticia/contra-o-eurocepticismo-marchar-marchar-1766831

    • Ricardo Pinhal

      Yeah, I see, so u say must believe, because u say so… Very worthy info based on bs newspapers of 4 years ago! And that eurocepticism is increasing, got that from where? The cereal box? Keep this bullshit to yourself, and if wanting to spread the “word” do us all a favor and get yourself better informed!

    • Ricardo Pinhal

      Do u even read what u post? What I get from your enlightened article is that the EU is campaigning for the available programs this year! Regarding the eurocepticism issue, what I only see is that Portugal is among the countries in the EU with ambivalent opinionated citizens regarding the European project! Even in this group, Portugal is the one with less ambivalent views regarding the EU! Get ur facts straight and do your homework!

    • José Bessa da Silva

      Do you read them or you just don’t understand portuguese? Do you even saw this is about only 14 countries? The 14 with the highest numbers? You really need to step up lad. Read!

  2. Luís Berenguer Todo-Bom

    As a portuguese citizen it feels like saving a drowning person from a river only to be told mid-rescue that we’re rescuing them to the “wrong margin”…
    12/05/2017 Sandra Batista, Coordinator of the Office of Events, Communications, and Information at the Portuguese government’s High Commission for Migration, has responded to this comment.

  3. Wolfgang Mizelli

    how about spreading jobs all over europe. there is enough work to do. we just need to pay it. making europe accessible for all for example.

    • Bobi Dochev

      Work? Where? 8.5% unemployment rate average for EU… way over 15% for the youth, as in countries like Greece and Spain it is 50% for Croatia and Italy over 40% – right – there is work everywhere – especially for unskilled workers like most of the migrants…

    • Fernando Nabais

      And what will you do when thousands of million of people from the third world come to Europe? Thinking before writing would be a good idea.

  4. Uli Czeranka

    no one wants to stay in a country, where he wont get a job, has no cultural ties and has the population against them. Still many people assume that its ok for them to stay in other countries. In the same time however, they actively work against refugees coming to that country. That is called double standard.

    • Imanuel d'Anjou

      finally some common sense in these comment sections

    • Uli Czeranka

      this whole debate is full of these standards. When the people live in collective housing without right to work it is assumed they abuse the social system. If they move further to another country it is assumed they were never real refugees and want even more abuse.

    • Παυλος Χαραλαμπους

      It’s a really “blame game ” here in Greece statistics show that most refugees want to leave the country because of the high rate of unemployment that doesn’t allow them to” blend in ” on the same time politicians especially from the far right are using the refuge crisis to “polarize the political atmosphere ” and gain more support even with lies and propaganda slogans like ” it’s an invasion to convert as all to Islam ” or even more ridiculous staff like ” they going to chop heads in the middle of the street “..it’s sad but it seems that political parties all over the continent are using peoples fears to gain more and more power

    • Uli Czeranka

      Παυλος Χαραλαμπους on the other hand do we have germany showing the “humanitarian face” by not closing the borders. In reality it always followed the strategy that as far away the refugees are, the better. Did work during Cold War because the Iron Curtain let just few refugees through and also worked in the early years of the Dublin System. But when it doesnt work everyone is crying. Its like with the Euro. Europe is divided and everyone is happy to put that problem on the shoulders of refugees

    • Παυλος Χαραλαμπους

      The northern European politicians are a little bit hypocritical on the one hand they want to show a ” humanitarian face” but on the other hand they doesn’t want to share the” burden ” with the south and this is what allows to far right to get more support- something that will bring more trouble in the future

    • Uli Czeranka

      agreed. Germany just calls for burden sharing because their own situation. At least the ECJ ruled that no refugee can be sent back to Greece. But some time ago the German Minister of Interiour stated, that they want to start deporting again, because “Greece has to learn the lesson”

    • Uli Czeranka

      that you should make your shelters humane after the court ruled they were not in 2011. He basically said that Greece does it on purpose. Of course he didnt say it that drastically… But it shows that not the refugees well being is the main concern in Europe but blame games. I think he has somehow a point but as you already stated is greece already not able to deal with the situation now. A situation that was created not mainly by Greece.

    • Παυλος Χαραλαμπους

      The shelters around Athens are ok but those on the islands. ..are overcrowded. .but what i don’t understand is how it helps the refugees being sent back to those camps..it’s more like an excuse to send the away. .

    • Uli Czeranka

      Παυλος Χαραλαμπους of course it doesnt help them. they are just intruments in political games

  5. Dragoş Voicu

    but why cross thousands of miles when there are stable countries nearby? (and also muslim countries so they’ll adapt faster)

    • Bobi Dochev

      Most of this “stable countries” rely on oil incomes and they pay their citizens to do nothing. They might be stable bit they don’t have well developed economies which need a lot of work forces.

    • Uli Czeranka

      do you actually think the refugees coming to Europe are the majority? maybe watch little bit further and you will find the missing millions staying in muslim countries. Examples are Libanon, Jordan, Turkey…

    • Maia Alexandrova

      Saudi Arabia is the biggest one at fault here. The richest, but most selfish and inhumane country in the region. EU should impose sanctions on Saudi Arabia for closing its borders to refugees, rather than trying to force the Czech Republic or Slovenia to take illegal Muslim migrants. Saudi Arabia has a lot of responsibility for the mess in the Middle East because it is the main sponsor of terrorism there and a perpetrator of crimes against humanity in Yemen. That butcher, the Saudi king, has been let loose for too long! USA and UK are happily taking billions of dollars from him in exchange for weapons that are then used for genocide in Yemen. A sickening trade of human lives and EU supports it! Shameful and disgusting!

  6. Giulia Noia Dipresa

    Problem is we don’t really have jobs for ourselves… so how can we possibly give a chance for a better life to others?

  7. José Bessa da Silva

    Of couse not! But then they are no longer refugees. Greece has no jobs for instance, refugees did everything to get there safe. They were refugees up to that point. In there some were deported, others helped. Those helped want to go to Germany. They became immigrants. Their main goal is no longer safety but money. This is why I think the refugee status should be “temporary”. Once the threat in their country is gone, they are gone as well. Of couse there would have to be exceptions, like life long threats, elderly people, etc. PS: Unlike what the woman said, Portugal does not have a very pro-EU attitude. It is one of the countries with highest eurocepticism rate in the EU and it’s current government is supported by not 1 but 3 anti-euro and anti-eu parties. One of them is right now doing a campaign to leave the EU. Let’s cut the propaganda crap shall we?

    • José Bessa da Silva

      Yes, it does make sense. Obviously not 3 generations after. I’m talking about first generations and their dependents. Being temporary would help to avoid economic migrants from using the refugee status because they would know that there is the possibility of being sent back.

    • José Bessa da Silva

      That is not an opinion article, you clearly did not read the article as it is about an inquiry and thus it is about statistical facts, not an opinion. Finally, being that the EU has changed nothing in it’s ways, if then you were euroceptic and now you are not, im sorry to tell you but you’re what is called an “useful tool”. Now, the EC is paying for a campaign against eurocepticism in Portugal. You do no pay for a campaign to be made in a place that is already in favour of what you’re capaigning for. The EC is paying for that because the portuguese have had enough with the EU as the stats have clearly shown. PS: Austerity started in 2010 and Troika came in 2011, so, not sure where you got that 2013 was the “biginning”. Are you sure you live in Portugal? https://www.publico.pt/2017/03/29/politica/noticia/contra-o-eurocepticismo-marchar-marchar-1766831

    • José Bessa da Silva

      Do you read them or you just don’t understand portuguese? The EC (not the EU), is doing a pro-EU campaign telling what it does for its citizens, not a campaign to show it’s programmes. The intended result is to deminish eurocepticism. Now, I fail to see how can you be such a bad intepreter. Do you even saw this is about only 14 countries, not 28? The 14 with the highest numbers? You really need to step up lad. Read! Fact is ONLY 18% of the portuguese is pro-EU, 25% is “ambivalent” and 57% were unacounted for. That means in those 57% are included ALL the anti-EU portuguese. The only certain thing you have is that pro-EU portuguese are a small minority. A clear sign the women in this article and you are off reality. Now, do yourself a favour and look at the current government and outside your window. Wait, you do not live in Portugal and that is why you can’t see the anti-EU cards made by BE and PCP…

  8. Bobi Dochev

    Ahahahah you really rock! So much stupidity can survive only in EU :)
    It is supposed that the refugees are been forced by war or persecution to leave their countries… the one who go where the job is are “Economical migrants” as Vytautas Vėžys said.
    And no it is not wrong, but there should be strict rules who and how to do it! It is really a time to understand that simple difference and then probably take some actions to put everything in order!

  9. Andrea Scacchi

    One question is economic migration another one is supposed or real refugees.
    Both by the way MUST respect the people and the culture of the country they are in.
    So… no burqa, no inslavement of women, no islamic laws, no rape gangs. If you want those thing you can go back to the fucking place you came from.
    We live in a great civilization, you don’t. Respect it or get the hell out.

    • Andrea Scacchi

      If I decide to move to a country with a culture different from mine i respect and try to adopt those values maintaing mine when possible.
      If i don’t like those value i can always change country you know?

  10. Hector Niehues-Jeuffroy

    No, it is not wrong for refugees to want to go where jobs are, but neither is it wrong for countries to restrict access to their labour markets and territories to their citizens. Personally, I want a great many things with very good reasons, but that doesn’t imply that I can have them.

  11. Andrew Potts

    Considering the unemployment stats among young people in Spain and other spots it is disgraceful that the EU wilfully imports more and cheap labour. The German government would have a much better educated workforce and zero assimilation issues if they actively recruited in European unemployment hotspots. The EU parliament should force the German government to address this importation of labour while not sticking to the Dublin protocols which is supposed to regulate this issue.

  12. Giorgos Tsolakis

    I think this is correct and this is how refugees they should allocating across Europe based on each country’s unemployment rates

    • Ivan Burrows

      .

      What of the people of those countries do not want the migrants, would you force them to take them ?

    • Giorgos Tsolakis

      if they join the EU they should comply according to their EU membership obligations since EU made special arangements within non EU countries they accepting refugees

    • Maia Alexandrova

      EU and Greece should make an arrangement with Saudi Arabia and send the migrants there, not force smaller EU countries to take them. They are only refugees in the countries bordering the conflict. Being a refugee doesn’t mean free and unrestricted travel to any country in the world. EU treaties did not include taking in illegal migrants, so it is not an EU membership obligation. Greece and Germany have voluntarily decided to accept them, rather than returning them, so they cannot exploit EU institutions just to force their own decision on the other members.

    • Paul X

      On unemployment rate?…..I take it you are joking.. so you think all these “refugees” are going to be employable?…and don’t you think a countries population density and infrastructure have anything to do with the amount of additional people it can handle?

      ……. good luck Malta….I think you are about to sink..

  13. Stefania Portici

    piena occupazione che assicuri la dignità e la libertà degli esseri umani .. La UE sta facendo questo ? Se non lo fa non ha senso che continui ad esistere , la disocupazione è ritenuta un crimine verso l’umanità . Full employment to ensure the dignity and freedom of human beings. Is the EU doing this? If it does not make sense that it continues to exist, disocupation is considered to be a crime against humanity

  14. Luís Berenguer Todo-Bom

    As a portuguese citizen it feels like saving a drowning person from a river only to be told mid-rescue that we’re rescuing them to the “wrong margin”…

  15. Alex Tselentis

    Who is checking who amongst these mostly young unknowwn males may be a jihadist with blood on their hands? It’s claimed thousands of hen have fled Syria and entered … Europe under the refugee status, end the war in Syria and stop his Trojan horse being being used to enter Europe.

    • Cliff Wilson

      Which is why the UK has had to shut the door to high numbers of refugees and immigrants. (Note they spend more on helping refugees in their home countries than any other EU Country.)

  16. Μίνωας Ράπτης

    No it’s not wrong. That just means they are not refugees but economic migrants. Because the definition of a refugee is someone who flees their country because of war not because of unemployment.

  17. Ivica Tkalcec

    Running from war * ..Running to where jobs are * .. Running to social , welfare benefits etc .. This all is not so simple , mostly cuz a big pat of migrants , imigrants simply use refugee crisis to ilegaly come to EU . There is no control for this sort of thing and I think .. somone who runs from war is not same from someone who illegal use crisis fr no work * benefits. And on end.. cuz there are no controls who suffers at most ? .. Ofc rel refugees .. end .

  18. Dimitar Peev

    It’s rather stupid to overlook cultural aspect of the problem. And soon many jobs will be taken anyway by technological progress, so where is the problem?

  19. Alexander GR

    How about job sharing all over Europe for the unemployed citizens first? Then assisting refugees as refugees.

  20. Julia Hadjikyriacou

    That is why a GMI would appease everyone. The homeless, the unemployed, the refugees, the flocking to rich countries. A more social EU with an equal GMI, equal benefits and equal minimum wage is required. The rich countries can simply offer higher wages to attract more employees. I know Germany does as people have told me a cleaner gets €2,000 a month and that is what I earned at my first job as a web designer in central London by a big company. Then Germany fleeces that money back in high rents but we can’t fix everything :)

    • Cliff Wilson

      To do this the wealthier countries would have to cut benefits. Their Govts would never get elected on that. To even it out at the level of higher paying countries would bankrupt the EU. The EU is a dream unlikely to come true.

  21. Fernando Nabais

    Refugees seek refuge. Those who want to go where jobs are, are economic migrants. However, there are not enough jobs for people already living “where jobs are”, so, the migrants are coming to live on benefits. It is not wrong that they want to live on benefits, but it is also not wrong that people living “where jobs are” do not accept them.

  22. Matej Mlinarič

    You are destroying your security and protection of your own people cause you just don’t want to admit that all cultures and ideologies are not same…. Just here is a thing why do you import islamic masses to potentially find some jobs. Anybody else would be better and more compatible then this just not on massive scale but actually just to fill needs for jobs within specific regions. Just that must not come at expense of native populations. Just before any of those could find a job they need to have sufficient understanding of a language that is used by native population. So those that refuse to learn our languages based on where they are will never be productive members of society. That makes them unwanted and only reason that anybody wants to keep those is to keep wasting money from tax payers.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j9e_vcSut0A

    Beside those are not rushing into welfare states cause wast majority of them have absolutely nothing to do with that war. This is what you should do with islamic immigration without compromising stability of whole continent. Also if your goal would be really to help masses then it would cost 12 times less to send supplies there then it is to keep one of them in western world. So this is absolutely massive waste of our resources and it is being done against will of the majority.

    https://counterjihadreport.com/2015/09/17/muslim-immigration-and-how-to-handle-it/

    http://gatesofvienna.net/2015/09/refugee-crisis-facts-and-myths/

    https://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/6489/muslim-immigration

  23. Pierre De Bozzi

    Major firms are bribing like hell EU Politicians in Bruxelles to get cheap workers for the industrial lobby which wants to maintain a big pressure on wages.

  24. Christina Kler

    So many European tax paying jobless , Homeless refugees would like to work as well !!! Let’s put thing in the right order first then we shall see ….

  25. Gatis Gailitis

    As long as you are ready to assimilate and respect the country you live in and not be an idiot sexually harassing women and thieving or living on benefits, then I think k a human being is entitled to live anywhere In the world.

  26. Paul X

    I would suggest if someone has time to sit and analyse statistics such as 12.3% unemployment in Portugal versus 4.3% in Germany then clearly they are not “fleeing” from anything in much of a hurry

  27. Dagmar Ueberfeld-Lang

    Who could blame anyway for leaving their home country if there is nothing left there, no work, no education, no prospect, no future. Be this because the country has been torn to pieces by war and terror, or by severe economic crisis. People have left their homes for a better live for centuries. This is not a new phenomenon. The first world still chooses to ignore its own contribution to the dire plight in which so many countries find themselves. Be this on the African continent, be this in the Middle East. The first world created this problem and now chooses to shut the door on it.

    • Cliff Wilson

      Who can blame those who sympathise but do not have the means of helping them?

  28. Maia Alexandrova

    It is wrong to give them a choice for free travel to any EU country they wish to go, let alone for jobs. This is not what the Refugee Convention provides for. It is how illegal migrants abuse the system and the rights of all European citizens.

  29. Dimitris Orfanoudis

    Υou are probably living in a dreaming world the migrants they dont realy want to go in the countries to find a job but in the countries whιch give the higher bonusses so is not necessary to work…

  30. Любомир Иванчев

    It doesn’t matter what someone wants, there are laws and people need to obey them. If it’s OK to break international and national laws and enter a country illegally, then by the same logic it should be OK to burglarize houses and mug people on the streets. Oh, wait, that’s what a lot of immigrants are already doing…

  31. Любомир Иванчев

    It doesn’t matter what illegal immigrants want, there are laws and these people need to obey them just like we do. If it’s OK to break international and national laws and enter a country illegally, then by the same logic it should be OK to burglarize houses and mug people on the streets. Oh, wait, that’s what a lot of immigrants are already doing…

  32. Chris Pavlides

    Europe do not needs non skilled non compatible culturally people. Help them build their own future at their homelands & focus on our continent unemployment and prospects with out follow others.

  33. Chris Pavlides

    Europe needs no more non skilled non compatible culturally people. Help them build their own future at their homelands & focus on our continents labor asset and prospects with out follow others.

  34. Rick Shay

    To ‘want’ to go where jobs are? Want? Heck, there’s a long list of places where I want to go to where jobs are. But, should I just declare (or make) myself a refugee and go there by any means available? Well it quite simple: Go lawfully. Don’t go unlawfully. ‘nuf said.

  35. Ivo Nobre

    In honest English: refugees are migrants and their search for jobs is a search for subsidies. Ok, now is correct ! That image of Lisbon scares me a little, can give them ideas of seeking subsidies here and we are already paying Jewish interest to the Germans …

  36. Stephen J Gorog

    The question is wrong, it should be: Is it wrong to let refugees, immigrants crush European culture and terrorize the people living here????

  37. Ioanna Geor

    are you kidding em? it’s like asking if Earth is round! Of course, they would want that! I would want that too for myself and I am not a refugee, of course someone who survived hell on earth would want that too

  38. Hank Chlebowski

    The bigger question is not as much monetary as it is a civil matter .Will the refugees assimilate into our societies or will they bring their own form of law

  39. Carolina Muro Rosa

    No, it’s a matter of survival. In a globalised world where only a few countries hold the production of goods they sell to other countries, it is only fare the people of countries who only buy and have no production, to want to take parte in the production and be able to make a living. No immigration, no trade.

  40. Roberto Torelli

    un problema che nessuno ha analizzato non è tanto il lavoro per i rifugiati ma la disoccupazione alta dei cittadini europei , EUROPEI ( non estranei ) .. Perchè si tiene la disoccupazione alta nella UE? Non è solo un aggiustamento della moneta unica ma è anche austerità voluta di proposito. Perchè ? In Europa abbiamo tutti tutele dei lavoratori. Una politica basata sul mercato ,quello che vuole è abbattere i costi del lavoro per avere un prodotto a basso prezzo e per farlo ha bisogno di manodopera ulteriore, a basso costo , che costringe i lavoratori TUTTI ad accettare le regole dettate dal mercato per togliere i diritti sociali dei lavoratori . Infatti nella UE non si parla mai di diritti sociali ei lavoratori , si parla di diritti umani e civili.. L’immigrazione sembra creata apposta per arrivare a questo scòpo altrimenti non si spiega il perchè di tanta austerità e disoccupazione . .

  41. Roberto Torelli

    un problema che nessuno ha analizzato non è tanto il lavoro per i rifugiati ma la disoccupazione alta dei cittadini europei ( EUROPEI non estranei ) . Perchè si tiene la disoccupazione alta nella UE? Non è solo un aggiustamento della moneta unica ma è anche austerità voluta di proposito. Perchè ? In Europa abbiamo tutti tutele dei lavoratori. Una politica basata sul mercato ,quello che vuole è vendere un prodotto , abbatte i costi del lavoro per avere un prodotto competitivo e per farlo ha bisogno di manodopera ulteriore, a basso costo , che costringe i lavoratori TUTTI ad accettare le regole dettate dal mercato per togliere i diritti sociali dei lavoratori . Infatti nella UE non si parla mai di diritti sociali dei lavoratori , si parla di diritti umani e civili.Per far ripartire l’economia c’è bisogno di investimenti e non può essere lasciato in mano alle banche perchè è vero che creano lavoro ma creano anche debiti, noi abbiamo bisogno di investimenti al netto , siamo in recessione. L’immigrazione sembra creata apposta per arrivare a questo scòpo altrimenti non si spiega il perchè di tanta austerità e disoccupazione . .

  42. Sérgio Paiva

    Nothing wrong folks, but for the sake of coherent speech, please explain people that a migrant is not a refugee, or vice versa. Good luck to all of those who come in peace.

  43. Cliff Wilson

    The point is that the welcome is affected by the needs of the Country. If they need new young blood then they have a way of recruiting it through refugees. The problem is that EU rules do not allow different countries to tailor their policies to fit. With the UK, young people from all over Europe have moved there because of jobs and good welfare benefits. Now the Schools and hospitals are full and there are not enough homes. The UK cannot keep up with the influx. It is the ‘one size fits all’ policy of the EU which has led the UK to the Exit door. Not because of a dislike of Immigrants or refugees but because they cannot cope with the numbers. I question whether the Population of Portugal wanted an open door to refugees. I doubt the Govt ever gave them the chance to vote on it.

  44. ironworker

    Of course is wrong. What is a refugee (definition) anyway? I suspect individuals (with dubious past) without any skills, striking different from locals from any perspective (think Martians), coming over and asking for limitless tuitions fees, welfare, free medical insurance for them, their spouses, their 11 children (eventually for their old parents and relatives), and free housing. If you ask them, they all want to be doctors, lawyers, and engineers, nothing less… There are no more good jobs for locals in a first place.

  45. Philip Spentzuris

    If we’re going to accept refugees, it should only be a temporary solution! They have to be repatriated to their country of origin!! Any permanent placement of any /all refugees should be based on their ability, qualification, skills base and how they will contribute to the country!! Anything else and anyone who drains the country of much needed funding should not be tolerated!!!

  46. Satsuma Angel

    Countries that accept refugees will be successful, countries that do not accept refugees will eventually fall into oblivion. Because always some of the brightest and most innovative people become refugees and they benefit their host countries enormously.

    • ironworker

      From what perspective “innovative”? Avoiding taxes, “create” under the table jobs, selling “halal” stuff where nobody asks for it and the most striking thing of all, “sticking together” in the neighborhood? No, thank you.

    • Zille Vuk

      you are mentaly poor person, i feel pity for you..

  47. Bert van Santen

    Stop spreading the standard pro -EU propaganda that for every economic migrant, a house, car, free money and a job is waiting. It is fake news!!!
    The Netherlands has 500.000 unemployed!

  48. Zille Vuk

    this economic refugees are NOT here to work… they come here for welfare,our woman and to establish sharia law.. the naked truth

  49. John Harrison

    If their primary reason for going somewhere is jobs and not safety then they cease to be refugees and become economic migrants. So no to answer the question but as soon as they do so they stop being refugees.

    • André Pais

      According to your logic, when they arrive in a country they shouldn’t look for jobs? Just stay around? -.-‘

    • John Harrison

      Thats not what I’m suggesting, I’m suggesting that they become an economic migrant if their primary reason for heading to a country is for economic reasons as opposed to safety reasons. I’m not bothered whether they look for jobs or not I’m just stating that if they go to a country for economic reasons they become an economic migrant and not a refugee.

    • Erik Jakub Citterberg

      According to your logic, should countries with high unemployment take no refugees?
      Because most of EEu has pretty high unemployment rate, the same goes for southern europe.

    • John Harrison

      Not really no. Not the large numbers that are coming across the Mediterranean. Maybe 10,000 or below.

    • Tin Knezevic

      EU hosts around 7% of world population and a third of global GDP.
      Average unemployment rate is under 10%, with some numbers being much lower in some areas.
      The EU population is around 500 million inhabitants (+/- UK).
      So… It can accept a few hundred thousend refugees.

      Besides… The EU population is getting old. So the economy actually needs an influx of migrants.

    • Javi Gil

      Fair enough. Good point.

    • Marek Klein

      Tin Knezevic Yes third world low skill workers that hate our culture is solution for oldening our population :D You know they produce no value taking social benefits they are no benefit for elderly population whatsoever. Besides growing expenditure on social benefits they only mean further destability of country terrorism, rape, sexual harasment, persecution of women and homosexuals, more no go zones. Multiculturalism does not work with Islam. Since ultimate political goal of Islam is submision of other cultures.

  50. JD Blaha

    If they cannot get jobs elsewhere they are accused of stealing jobs in the country that they have refugee status in. Either way they are damned. and either way, all they want to do it work – which they are also accused by europeans of not wanting to do.

  51. Nando Aidos

    No, it is not wrong. US pilgrims did it, Dutch refugees to SA did it, the world was populated by refugees of one sort or another, always looking for greener pastures. Some by personal decision, others under untold economic, political or religious pressures.
    What is wrong, however, is for nations to continue creating political, economic and religious conditions that cause all these absurd and catastrophic mass migrations to happen where personal choice is a non existing factor.
    No less wrong than when religious or political prosecution chased hordes of people around the world during previous centuries.

  52. nando

    No, it is not wrong. US pilgrims did it, Dutch refugees to SA did it, the world was populated by refugees of one sort or another, always looking for greener pastures. Some by personal decision, others under untold economic, political or religious pressures.
    What is wrong, however, is for nations to continue creating political,economic and religious conditions that cause all these absurd and catastrophic mass migrations to happen where personal choice is a non existing factor.
    No less wrong than when religious or political prosecution chased hordes of people around the world during previous centuries.

  53. Giulia Noia Dipresa

    Obviously not… the problem is that thay have a distorted image of “our” world, we don’t have that wealth they look for anymore. Also there’s a difference between refugees which are trying to stay alive and come from war countries and clandestines…

  54. Cãlin Rednic

    If they receive an allowence for being a refugee, their status doesn’t imply liberty of movement through the host country, not even in search for work. Their official reason of being in Europe is avoiding being a war victim.

  55. Higaara Nakamura

    That is not wrong, that is smart. I am Portuguese and I migrated to England because my country is just falling apart.

  56. Yordan Vasilev

    There is one big problem in whole Europe: there is no enough workers and IT specialists. If economy doesn’t work, the social system will failure. The problem appairs if the refugees don’t want to work or committe crimes.

  57. Τζινα Πολεμαρχακη

    Wrong is to be refugee and no one should be, everybody should have the chance to stay with prosperity to their homeland ,to fulfill his dreams! One day I hope people will realize that above titles we are all humans and we are all connected..

  58. Jorge Miguel Camacho Afonseca

    Just recently controversy occurred when the niece of the president of Socialist Party (PS) got a coveted place in a municipalized company, current practice among those with political ties to main parties…

    • Jorge Miguel Camacho Afonseca

      it is absolutely… how can they weigh in their hard labour if all that maters is family connections? Portugal has failed to present itself as a place where if you work hard you can succeed in life… That is why so many go abroad…

    • Pedro Vidal

      Jorge has a point. It is not your skills that make a difference in Portugal. It has no importance whatsoever. That’s why the country has many problems and the root of many issues in society, we could be much better than any country in northern Europe. And also the Portuguese must wake up to the EU. It is not an angel, it give us nothing, on the contrary, it takes away, and also in the root of Portugal’s owes.

  59. Bódis Kata

    They should get the work visas.

    We have the EU blue card system exactly for that purpose, sadly even the EU is forgetting about it.

  60. Haris Grigoridis

    On European civilization the work environment needs educated people. The majority of the immigrants are not educated for the offered jobs. Also EU coutnries such as Greece, Spain, Portugal already have unmployment issues. So why not these vacancies not to fullfilled from the domestic population?
    This is enough with the propaganda with the immigrants

  61. Bódis Kata

    Those who seek work usually cone to the EU with work visas. The others seek the benefits and some of them seek safety.

  62. Haris Grigoridis

    This is so funny how the title of the article admit that refugees are not refugees from any war anymore but job seekers and searchers of economical benefits payed from the local population

    • Imanuel d'Anjou

      when they do it, its opportunism. when we do it, its capitalism. disgusting double standard

  63. Matej Zaggy Zagorc

    Asking the wrong question. Is it wrong that you move to a country that provides for you and your family but you refuse to integrate (mind you, not abandon your traditions or culture in your household).
    If you go to UAE and don’t act by their culture, guess what happens?

    • Andrea Scacchi

      They pay you? Ohhhh eheh.
      The European Union is a bunch of idiots with idiotic ideas.
      Keep it to removing roaming and STFU Europe!
      By the way the abolition of roaming seems to be the only good thing done by the UE to the european since Schengen.
      Good job europe 1 good deal every 20years.

  64. Tim Nick Knight

    If they are handing out checks and welcoming an invasion, why would they not want to go there. Countries like Germany and Sweden are their new homelands.

    • Amphib Ian

      Tell me about the rights that you have lost because of refugees…. I’ll wait.

    • Mario Kurzio Scortichini

      who said refugees. I speak of illegal migrants which are the majority in southern EU

  65. Dirk Schönhoff

    Nothing is wrong with this as long as there are jobs and the refugees have the skills to do them.

  66. Vytautas Vėžys

    No refugee want jobs… All refugees from Lithuania run away even we have lost of available jobs, but we have shitty salaries and “to small social benefits”

  67. Jean Deconick

    it is understandable they want to come to Europe. But we can’t support all those refugees. The resources and jobs etc are limited.

    • Bódis Kata

      Understanding the meaning of scarce resource and limits is not a skill that Europe’s liberals have.

  68. Andrej Ruščák

    Most jobs are here in the Czech Republic and there are indeed many foreigners who come here to work. But virtually none of the so-called ‘refugees’ even want to come here, and the ones that did come here left for Germany at first occasion.

    • Andrej Ruščák

      Artur Pereira I always wondered about that. Portugal is a beautiful country with really nice people, geographically close to the migrant paths and yet – they don’t seem to be willing to go there. This says something about them being ‘legitimate refugees’, indeed.

    • Bódis Kata

      The people who come *to work* in the EU usually get work visas.

  69. Andrej Ruščák

    Many European jobs are here in the Czech Republic and there are indeed many foreigners who come here to work. But virtually none of the so-called ‘refugees’ even want to come here, and the ones that did come here left for Germany at first occasion.

  70. Andreas Tsa

    “wrong” ? That is a poor choice of terminology to formulate around this question. Where did you people went to school?

  71. Amphib Ian

    Wrong? No way! Why go somewhere where you cannot develop yourself, where you cannot raise your children in the best possible circumstances?

  72. Akis Muto

    Thats not wrong. Whats wrong is to try to enforce on other people their beliefs and ideas

  73. Katerina Mpakirtzi

    Its normal. Everybody look for betrer life. But only Europe helps them. Rusia and Usa only bombs them for gas. Also we dont hate islam but we dont want minorities and big teams that we cant control them. Religion zelotism is so easy to create blood and deaths

  74. Yvonne Murray

    I would think it is the most natural and obvious thing, go where you can find work and travel until you find it, after all that’s what we in U.K. Do all the time, have done for centuries, in times past because of famine and land clearances, now through choices, except if you live in London and working poor, then they shove you north by making you unable to afford to stay with increasing housing costs, we have so many of us go abroad too for work made possible by eu . We are fortunate ones because it’s mostly our choice, refugees are forced into that decision mostly because of war

  75. Andrew Potts

    Some scary unemployment stats around Europe so suggesting there is jobs for all is dishonest importing skilled or unskilled labour is good for big international companies who so no loyalty to people. Of course it’s bad for Europeans to import millions more to compete for the job, health and housing that is available.

  76. eusebio manuel vestias pecurto

    European peoples have lived for centuries with different levels of immigration without major problems But since World War II all countries have been dealing with massive influxes of people who have great difficulty adapting to the nation they ask for security We need a progressive economy that prioritize the values of liberties and associate with the idea of equality

  77. Nuno Roberto

    Don’t have anything against refugees coming to Lisbon but you could’ve picked a better city than mine when it comes to talking about jobs.

  78. Dimitris Orfanoudis

    As long as EU providing economic aid and housing for every migrant entering europe then migrants are not interesting for any job as they live out of money provided by EU …Its wrong to fill up EU for any kind of migrants

  79. Andreia

    My first comment is why for this article Portuguese journalists working on the field that really know the situation were not involved?
    My second comment is that it is not true the Euro-skepticism declared by another of this forum. My third comment is that Portuguese people are among the people in the world that best welcome difference. The proof of this is how well different religions and beliefs work together in our country. Lastly the coordination of refugee relocation needs to better improved as well as the perception that they also need to accept EU relocation rules. If I get accepted in another country or territory I must also respect their rules. How we say in Portugal in Rome be roman.

  80. Arthur Gustin

    Yes it’s wrong when you still have thousands of shits to get right in your own country !

  81. Sérgio Paiva

    It’s perfectly ok to look for better jobs and life quality in general. But for the sake of intelectual honesty, at some point, the media should stop calling them refugees.

    • Gabriella Anderson

      Why dont you give them all your belongings? Your apartment/house, salary, girlfriend…. they have the right to enjoy those!!!!!

  82. Daniel Munk

    No – it is only natural. Everyone would most probably want to improve their standards of living. However, the real question is whether their trip should be facilitated or priority should be given to ensure the safety of the refugees, that is, if indeed we’re taking about refugees and not economic migrants.

  83. Manuel Alegria

    absolutly not…
    but they are moving from their home land and HAVE to aceppt new ways of life, probably they not use to…

    • Carmelita Caruana

      Enlightened countries run good programs to teach them about the culture of their new country, teach the language, help them integrate.

  84. Bruno Marques

    😅😅😅 I told you Portuguese were surprisingly good at looking good to everybody without compromising

    • Natasha Glendening

      No they don’t if you look at the research refugees for the most part do not make calculated decisions on where to go. The most significant factor of where they go to is connections i.e. if they have family or know of somebody etc in a particular country.

    • Galina Dimitrova Valcheva

      Really Natasha Glendening???? I haven’t seen neither one of them working! They don’t even send their children to school! This tolerance will lead Europe till the end of civilization!

    • Eugenia Serban

      Me neither.
      None of them get jobs, just stand in the streets in groups
      Living on the money from our taxes, we work to support a good life for young and fit migrants from outside Europe

    • Carmelita Caruana

      Galina Dimitrova Valcheva on the contrary tolerance is the sure proof of civilisation, of a wise and mature society that remembers history and the lessons it teaches

  85. Galina Dimitrova Valcheva

    Refugees from where? They are immigrants and should take care of them selves! Who is taking care of me and paying my bills! This is what I call discrimination!

  86. Sandrine Carlier

    Actually most persons would do the same if our country was under war. The problem is the the majority of them are not from Syria but elsewhere but even then who cares. The point is that there are other countries that are not at war that have needs and of the same religion if not quite similar culture. They are Algeria, Malaysia, Indonesia, Tunisia, Kazakhstan, Oubeskistan.. and on. If Germany needs a greater number of workers they have a great pond from which to pick in view of their unemployment rate: Greece, Spain, Italy, France…

  87. Marian Rodu

    Refugees and immigrants are two totally dinstict things and I AM SO FRACKING TIRED OF SEEING THEM USED AS BEING THE SAME!

  88. Ioanna Geor

    You are a person that has faced war, his family death because of it, Lisa of fortune, home,land, sleep,identity,emotions , dignity and survival means. Isn’t it obvious and righteous to ask for happiness? Europe messed up with their countries providing weapons to ” liberators” along with USA and bombed the s**t out those places. And now we have the nerve to think whether it is right or wrong for a human to be happy after all this. Are freaking stupid asking that question when Europe is partially responsible for ISIS?

  89. Rui Frias

    Refugees? we took many, 115 years ago we took the Boers from South Africa, Spanish civil war some enter in our nation, 2 world war, on 70s around 1 millions of people enter in Portugal as refugess (from our ex former colonies in Africa) with no money from anyone else, we took them. Everybody is welcome in Portugal..

  90. Kokonas George

    Refugee, based on the International Law, is someone only as long as his life is in danger and he is “moving” to save himself. The first country, which provides security, is the last in which he is classified as a refuge and is valid. … A refugee, for example, is the Syrian “up” to Turkey or Jordan and Lebanon. If he leaves these countries, which offer him security and protection, he automatically turns into an illegal migrant. END OF STORY

  91. Dylan Llewellyn

    The reality of Paris, on the street in the Latin Quarter. A bed in the floor made with an old bit of sofa foam. Baby clothes and tiny shoes and a bottle of milk. When I walked back down the road the “owner” was back. A young woman with 2 children under 5 and a new born baby, this is where they will sleep tonight in a “civilised European capital “!

    This is the shame of all of Europe, children are innocent!

  92. jakov

    In all countries where jobs are social benefits are much higher than in countries like bulgaria or croatia with high unemployment rate. Refugees aiming for better benefits not jobs.

  93. Dani Alexandrov

    Depend what you mean under refugees, Syrian refugees that really need help or illegals crossing illegally the EU borders, send by god knows who, commuting crimes and terrorising European citizens?

  94. Dimitar Peev

    No, it isn’t. But destroying western civilization is what we will get at the end. It’s simple: culture and civilization values will be lost when newly arrived people don’t understand them and simply dislike any side of european civiliztion.

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