over-qualified non-eu nationals

Non-EU nationals more likely to be over-qualified than EU nationals


Employed non-nationals are more likely to be over-qualified for their job than nationals. Non-EU employees are especially affected by this phenomenon.

According to a report by Eurostat, the over-qualification rate was 39.6% among non-EU citizens and 32% for other EU countries citizens. In general, the over-qualification rate for nationals stood at 20.% – 0.2 percentage points below 2020 levels.

The over-qualification rates have dropped by 1.9 percentage points for non-EU citizens. Meanwhile, it dropped 0.2 percentage points for citizens from other EU countries. That means those have increased for nationals by 0.2 percentage points compared to those in 2020.

The highest over-qualified shares were recorded in Greece, where 69.5% of non-EU citizen employees are over-qualified for their job. Greece was followed by Italy (67.1%), Spain (57 %), Estonia (46.4%) and Austria (46.2%).

As per EU citizens from any respective EU country, the over-qualification rate was the highest for those Cyprus (50.3%). Greece followed with 48.2%, Italy (46.9%), Spain (46.2%) and Ireland (41.4%).

On the other hand, Spain and Greece have the highest rates of over-qualified employed nationals, with 34.5 and 32.1 per cent, respectively. They were followed by Cyprus (29.5%), Ireland (26.8%) and Austria (26.2%).

Data by Eurostat show that Luxembourg reported the lowest over-qualification rates for 2021. They stood at 4.8% for over-qualified nationals, 5.5%for citizens and 8.2% for non-EU citizens.

Over-qualification worse for 35-64 year olds

Over-qualification for non-EU citizens and citizens of other EU countries was higher among people between 35 and 64 years older.

“The over-qualification rate was higher among non-EU citizens aged 35-64 years at 42.8% compared with 35.2% in the group of people aged 20-34 years. For citizens of other EU countries, the gap was smaller at three percentage points, with 33% in the older age group compared with 30% in the younger group,” Eurostat explains.

The over-qualification rate was higher for people in the younger age group among nationals in the EU, with a difference of 3.9 percentage points.

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