Above 30 000 more immigrants employed
Labour market and earnings;Immigration and immigrants
innvregsys, Employment among immigrants, register-based, immigrant background, country background, period of residence, employees, occupational groups, self-employed, industries (for example manufacturing, public administration, restaurants)Employment , Labour market and earnings, Labour market and earnings, Immigration and immigrants

Employment among immigrants, register-based2011, 4th quarter



This is an archived release.

Go to latest release

Above 30 000 more immigrants employed

Immigrants contributed to 70 per cent of the employment growth in Norway from the 4th quarter of 2010 to the 4th quarter of 2011. Recently arrived labour immigrants from the EEA countries contributed to much of this growth, but there was also some increase within other, more established immigrant groups.

Immigrants from the EU countries in Eastern Europe had the strongest growth in the number of employed with more than 17 000, and many of them were settled in Norway in 2011. The employment rate among immigrants increased from 61.6 to 62.8 per cent in 2011. In the whole population, the employment rate was unchanged at 69.1 per cent.

Increase among most of the immigrants

The employment rate among immigrants increased by 1.2 percentage points from the 4th quarter of 2010 to the 4th quarter of 2011. Immigrants from the EU countries in the east had the strongest growth, at 2.7 percentage points, followed by immigrants from North America and Oceania, with an increase of 1.7 percentage points, and those from the Nordic countries with 1.3 percentage points. The other immigrant groups had a more moderate growth, from 0.3 percentage points (Africa) to 0.7 percentage points (Eastern Europe outside the EU and Latin America). Immigrants from Western Europe had a marginal decrease at 0.4 percentage points.

Strongest increase among immigrant males

The growth in the employment rate was strongest among immigrant males, who had an increase from 65.8 to 67.6 per cent (1.8 percentage points), while it was somewhat weaker among the female immigrants, from 57.1 to 57.6 per cent (0.5 percentage point). This tendency is due to the large growth in the number of labour immigrants, which is a very male dominated group.

The gender difference among immigrants was 10 percentage points in favour of the men in the 4th quarter of 2011 (67.6 versus 57.6 per cent), while in the whole population the difference was almost half, i.e. 5.3 percentage points (71.7 versus 66.4 per cent). Female immigrants have the largest gap to the whole population and thus contribute to lowering the average among immigrants. There are, however, large variations in the employment level between the different countries of birth, both among women and men.

Still large differences among immigrants

Immigrants from the EEA countries, who mainly consist of labour immigrants, have an employment rate that is higher than the national average at 69.1 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2011. The employment rates among these groups were as follows: 76 per cent (the Nordic countries), 73.6 per cent (EU countries in Eastern Europe) and 70.4 per cent (Western Europe). Next to them we find immigrants from North America and Oceania with a share of employed at 65.8 per cent, while immigrants from South and Central America and Eastern Europe outside the EU had rates of 63.6 and 62.2 per cent respectively. The Asian group lies somewhat lower, at ca.54 per cent, while immigrants from Africa lie even lower, at 44.2 per cent employed. These differences have been quite stable irrespective of economic cycles.

One of the factors behind the two latter employment rates is a relatively large share of refugees with a shorter time of residence in Norway within these two immigrant groups, especially among the Africans. The duration of residence in Norway has much more impact on the employment rate among refugees compared to other groups, as for instance labour immigrants, who are employed a short time after arrival.

Norwegian-born to immigrant parents are closer to the young population in total

Norwegian-born to immigrant-parents constitute a rather young population group where as many as half of the group are below 21 years of age, and many are likely to be students/pupils and thus not included in the labour force. If we, however, look at the groups of employed aged 20 to 30 years, their employment rates lie between 7 and 8 percentage points higher than the employment rate in the same age group among immigrants and between 4 and 5 percentage points below the total average rate for this age group.

Highest share of immigrants in the private sector

The private sector had the largest share of immigrants in 2011 as in the previous years. This is due to the larger variety in occupations within this sector where many unskilled jobs are included, compared to the state sector, where academic occupations are much more dominant. The shares of immigrants within the three economic sectors were as follows: private (14.5 per cent), state (9.2 per cent) and municipal and county sector (9.7 per cent). The private sector also had the strongest increase in the share of immigrants from 2010 to 2011 (1.4 percentage points). This is due to the large flow of labour immigrants to industries in the private sector, above all the construction industry and provision of personnel.

More employees work together with immigrants

The share of employees who worked in establishments with at least one immigrant employed increased from 80.6 per cent in the 4th quarter of 2010 to 82.2 per cent in the 4th quarter of 2011, i.e. an increase of 1.6 percentage points. These figures apply to establishments with at least 10 employees.

People born abroad to foreign-born parents are defined as immigrants. They must also be registered as resident in Norway for at least six months. Figures on employed persons on short - term stays will be published on 25 June.

All employment figures relate to the population aged 15 to 74 years.