Stuart Gentle Publisher at Onrec

Greeks rank UK no. 1 choice for work

Economic crisis in Greece forces talent to look abroad

A survey commissioned by and Intelligence Group has found that the UK is top choice for Greeks wanting to move abroad to avoid further turmoil in the Eurozone.  Over half (55%) of Greek workers surveyed said they would consider moving to the UK ahead of any other country, with 70% blaming the bad economic situation in Greece as a motivation for moving. The second destination of choice was Germany on 43% while the USA came in third on 42%.

The top reason Greek workers gave for wanting to move to the UK was better career opportunities, with 70% stating this was a consideration. Other reasons include wanting a better standard of living (63%) and the chance to start a new life (31%). The UK’s position is seen as advantageous with strong trade links with Europe but sitting outside the toxic Eurozone.

This comes despite a mixed outlook for the economy in the UK with GDP shrinking by 0.7% according to the official GDP statistics for Q2 2012.[1] The labour market in Britain, however, looks more positive with jobs increasing by 76,000 between March and June 2012.[2]

However, the situation in Greece is dire by comparison, with unemployment hitting a record 22.5% in April this year according to Greece’s statistics service EL.STAT[3], a sharp rise from 16.2% in April last year. Perhaps more worryingly, over half of young Greeks are unemployed which has more than doubled inside a single year.

Mike Booker, International Director, said, “The UK economy is still in a precarious position, but to countries in the Eurozone like Greece and Spain, we are an attractive prospect in terms of career progression. This survey gives a good indication of where people will be moving in future and it looks as if the UK will gain a large proportion of mobile global talent, particularly from Greece. Although the UK is technically in a double dip recession, there are positive signs like the improving jobs market and hosting the Olympics which, our research suggests, international jobseekers are looking on favourably.”