International Organization for Migration (IOM) har nyligen gett ut rapporten Improving Access to Labour Market Information for Migrants and Employers. I rapporten har jag och Karin Magnusson skrivit kapitlet om Sverige som handlar om arbetskraftsinvandring och arbetsmarknadsinformation, dvs. hur potentiella arbetskraftsinvandrare och svenska arbetsgivare finner varandra. Det finns också ett avsnitt om matchning mellan invandrare som redan finns i Sverige och arbetsgivare. Kapitlet kan också läsas som en slags uppföljning av lagen om arbetskraftsinvandring som trädde i kraft den 1 december 2008, där vi sammanfattar vad som hänt sedan dess och hur forskningslitteraturen och berörda aktörer bedömer effekterna av lagen.
Vår sammanfattning ser ut så här:
New rules for labour migration came into force in December 2008 with the aim to introduce a demand-driven labour migration system. Now it is the employer, not state agencies, that determines the need for labour. There are no restrictions in regard to occupational categories or sectors and there are no quantitative restrictions in the form of quotas. The main condition is that the level of pay is in line with applicable collective agreements and general insurance conditions.
The number of labour migrants from third countries was between 13,600 and 14,800 from 2009 to 2011. The labour migrants can roughly be divided into three major categories: skilled, low-skilled and seasonal. Many of the migrants work in occupations with a need for labour. This especially applies to computing professionals, engineers and technicians but also seasonal migrants in the berry-picking industry. At the same time, many migrants come to work in the service sector where there is a big surplus of available workers.
There are many advantages of a demand-driven labour migration system like the Swedish one, but also some shortcomings. The most obvious advantage is its simplicity. The system is the same for all forms of labour migration and for all sectors and occupations. The waiting times are, despite some complaints from employers and employees, short in an international context. The system also provides great flexibility for employers. Companies can quickly respond to all forms of labour demand, especially larger companies who are certified and given priority by the Migration Board.
The problem is that it is virtually only larger companies with access to international networks that can utilize the system’s advantages. With the exception of employers with a foreign background, small and medium-sized companies have a hard time finding potential employees. Much needs to be done if employers and employees without international networks are going to be able to find each other. The excellent information at www.workinginsweden.se, about why and how to move to Sweden and how to apply for work permits, needs to be complemented with a centralized portal with actual job vacancies directed to potential employees in third countries. Another issue is that the system, which is supposed to be driven by demand, actually allows for a substantial labour migration to sectors and occupations with a large surplus of native workers. Labour migration in those sectors and occupations too often involves problems with sham contracts and the exploitation of migrant workers.
Since the state has handed over the responsibility for matching to the market, there is no room for cooperation between origination and destination countries such as international agreements, organized pre-departure training and educational programmes. This makes it virtually impossible to recruit personnel to shortage occupations, for example doctors and nurses, who require training and supplementary education in order to work in Sweden.
Rapporten kan hämtas här.