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East European migration patterns -Romanian emigration-.

The human society, on a global analysis, is dynamic, and the history of the continents was marked by significant migratory movements. International migration is an extremely complex issue, which includes several types of movements of people conditioned by a number of reasons and forces with very different causes and consequences.

This diversity leads to the conclusion that the determinants and consequences of international migration should be assessed in various contexts, depending on the countries and specific migration patterns involved. On a global scale, both Romania and Bulgaria were noted as countries of emigration until now, being rather transitional areas for those wishing to reach Western Europe in terms of immigration.

They both have a series of common features when talking about migration patterns. However, integration into the European Union has had direct effects on the structure of this phenomenon; they became attractive for immigration. Migration is often a result of economic and social development, being able to help develop and improve social and economic conditions, or, on the other hand, perpetuate stagnation and inequality. These things depend on the nature of migration and the actions of governments and other stakeholders involved.

The economic and social development of Romania in the last twenty years, marked by the increasing loss of national economic potential and, therefore, decrease of the income of a large part of the population, along with the liberalization of labor markets worldwide, has prompted large number of Romanians to turn their attention to finding jobs in developed European countries (2). The impact of the demographic trends on social risks is complex and in many situations, difficult to identify, because in most cases, the action of the demographic factor is being associated with influences from other factors.

By leaving the country for work, returning and immigration to Romania major national economical and social processes are being conditioned. Migration is a complex phenomenon, in which opportunities, problems, history, present and future on a national level can be identified. Many of the problems still unsolved by the transition towards open market economy and a welfare state have been approached by a large number of Romanians on their own, by temporary emigration. We may refer to it as a type of social transition through migration, which, on the short term, has proved successful, but on the long term might have multiple implications, including major risks, worthy of being considered.

Speaking of risks in the area of demography is somewhat inappropriate, because of inertia, stability and rigidity of demographic events and changes that occur and their effects are slow, displayed over time and largely predictable. The changes that have been experienced by population and demographic phenomena in economic and social transition are profound, with a strong economic and social impact, but more important is the size of prospective developments and implications.

The main patterns of the demographic evolution after 1989 can be summarized to the following characteristics (3):

1. rapid and massive decline in birth rates in early 1990s and maintaining it at a low and relatively constant in subsequent years (almost 40% lower than 1989);

2. impairment of health of population and life expectancy at birth recoil during 1991-1996;

3. reduce of mortality by age and consistent rise in life expectancy at birth since 1996 but no positive effect on overall mortality (deaths per 1000 inhabitants), due to the increased number and proportion of the elderly, where it produces most of the deaths (80% of deaths held annual population aged 60 and over);

4. installation of natural population decline (since 1992) due to the above-mentioned developments of birth and mortality

5. restructuring of internal migration flows between urban and rural economic crisis of the 1990s that hit especially urban population, increasing unemployment and housing costs;

6. a veritable explosion of external migration, the major component being temporary migration.

In recent years Romania was primarily a source country or country of transitfor the migration flows. Membership is correlated with increased EU income levels and wages in Romania are likely in coming years to lead to a change in this situation. In the first phase, Romania will be both source and destination country, then the number of immigrants is expected to exceed those of migrants. This development took place in countries like Spain, Portugal or Italy, and is currently producing in the countries that acceded to the EU in 2004 (Slovakia, Poland, Hungary etc.). Examples of countries like Spain (which has negotiated bilateral agreements on migration time and developed internal policies flexible to accommodate the immigrants) and Italy (who did such things) show that rational and coherent approach allows the phenomenon of social and economic mitigation negative (human trafficking, informal economy, violence, ethnic conflicts, rampant radical attitudes, effects on social security systems, etc.), without affecting the positive effects. Recently, due to the position of EU membership, Romania has started to develop some policies in this area, but developments are currently strongly slowed by permanent political changes.

Until the advent and expansion of economic and financial crisis in countries where there is poverty Romanian migrants risk to children left home could not be assessed as major. However, there are other issues that generate concern and refer to a particular vulnerability of these children psychologically affected by the absence of parents or their divorce, raised under poor supervision, in some cases exposed to the fragility of abandonment and delinquency perspective.

The economic crisis in countries where Romanian migrants are fully struck and some of them have lost their jobs. Some of them are still in those countries, unemployment or rendering activities to ensure their survival in the economic recovery hopes. Economic situation of children left at home is also deteriorating. From another perspective, the massive return home of these migrants could increase the number of unemployed in an economic context in which economic deterioration in the country looming large layoffs.

One cannot know now how the external migration will affect the size of this population of working age. If the economy requires a workforce that offers superior digital declining demographic imbalances will reflect upon the entire economic and social system. The worst facet of imbalances will be the ratio of economically active population and the elderly, the funds required by the rapid growth of the latter population and financial resources that society can provide drastic reduction of the population under age work from which these resources.

The employment increase in economic activity will only be able to cover part of the potential labor shortage. The problem of attracting foreign labor should not be neglected only strategies will require decisions well weighed all aspects, to avoid negative effects. Sectors such as construction, textiles and medicine, already clear labor shortage due to migration (4).

What part of this deficit can be resolved through return migration, the migration or training of new specialists in the country, is a problem whose solution enters at least three parameters. In the first place there is the matter of specific wage offer in Romania, compared with those of immigration (the Romanian) or abroad (for immigrants coming from other countries). Secondly the relative cost of living in Romania compared with countries coming or returning migrants.

For the Romanians abroad who could decide to return there also matters a third factor related to the quality of public services and institutions in Romania.

They have left Romania for economic reasons but will return not only based on financial and economic arguments, but also institutional. Corruption, excessive bureaucracy and lack of regard for the public service may be reasons for us to return home.

The Romanian society has a predominantly positive perception of migration: 55% of the Romanian believes that "it's good that some go to work abroad". Highest dissatisfaction related to the situation of remaining at home, children, parents or husband/wife. Maximum concern about the situation especially parents home. Of course, family is a natural concern in relation to those left behind. In this area of concern with is very likely, and families in the emigration from the country which produced negative consequences.

We have no quantitative estimates for any of the phenomena associated with temporary migration: divorce, mental illness for children, antisocial behavior of children left alone, emigration of unaccompanied minors, elderly, etc. no help.

Starting from the general and particular causes that generate population mobility in the territory, one can get the following overview of the migration phenomenon.

On the one hand, we can discuss about individual migration, determined primarily by economic factors. Depending on their range, the period of travel and means of travel, they are subdivided into seasonal migration and final long-distance travel. They can often become final (forced migration, limited-range free migration, industrial or agricultural migration). The most common form of migration of this type is known as rural exodus, primarily aimed movements within countries. There are also known periodic movements unrelated to the type of work--the type of tourism and pilgrimage type.

On the other hand, we can discuss about conducted migration organized in groups, which can be final (warlike migrations--some of the great invasion, colonization--migrations of hunters, livestock farmers, farmers after exhausting their land).

They can also be rhythmic; the ones that took place in a defined space (pastoral nomads, nomadic fisherman, hunter, picker, farmer with seasonal rhythm) or have a seminomadic character--agricultural and pastoral life in the mountains or so. Such movements are determined by a way of life, shaped for centuries to come.

Migration is a phenomenon with implications for the community and has a strong effect upon family and community networks. One of the most important effects of migration is felt in the community. Changes occur in the mentalities caused by contact with foreign countries, increased active social criticism and entrepreneurship. These are positive effects to be included in local policies and promoted in the community. However, there are strong demographic changes, depopulated and aging communities living mainly from remittances. On the other hand, there appears the strict question about the impact of remittances on the need and production of public goods.

In its early stages, until 2001, Romanian emigration was highly selective, with a predominance of men towards women departure, townspeople against peasants, Moldavia and Transylvania from Wallachia and Oltenia, with a strong regional differentiation.

After 2001, there appeared a widespread tendency to reduce the selectivity of migration. Structure of migration flows and, consequently, the structure of Romanian emigrants abroad are getting closer to the population structure. Men and women, city dwellers and villagers, for example, reach weights close to the Romanian Diaspora in the new structure established after 1990.

The figures indicate that, in recent years, over 60% of the total number of persons who left Romania to establish in another state is represented by women. The situation can be explained by the higher prevalence of job for them in most European countries. Regarding the influence of gender distribution of the Romanian citizens living abroad who establish their families left behind on the course and, especially, the children noted that the growing number of women who leave Romania cause a bad reaction, all more pronounced among juveniles who remain at home. This is determined primarily by the fact that in our country, women are dealing, in general, with the growth and education of children (5).

Many of the features of the Romanian mass migration are derived from it's family and employment construction of mostly men and women in the household or home care for the elderly. In terms of employment, the typical Romanian immigrant is a provider for the household, no matter if it's male or female. Migration for employment is associated with a significant migration of school-age children accompanying their parents abroad. In only three years, 2006-2008, approximately 30,000 children dropped out of school in Romania, in order to continue abroad.

Romania is a country of emigration not only in terms of temporary migration. Even at low volume of arrivals and departures of the final report is in favor of leaving. In the early 90s there was the massive departure of the Saxons in Germany that helped emigration, which proved to be much stronger than permanent immigration. Later, especially after 1998, the two territorial mobility curves were recorded near the specific volumes.


The economic crisis brought a kind of "shrinkage" by reducing the number of Romanian emigration departures to work abroad and increasing the number of returns. The share of Romanians abroad with structured intentions to return home in the autumn of 2008 were estimated, as part of survey data, at less than 30% of those living abroad. Two other surveys conducted in late 2007 and first half of 2008 with the migrants in Spain and Italy showed a higher potential for recovery in the country. Thus in Spain 44% claimed to have seriously thought about returning to Romania in the next three months, while their share in Italy was 38%. In both cases, however, it records the state of mind at the time when the crisis was not so marked, both in Romania and in host countries, and in late 2008 or early 2009 (7).


[1.] Administraria Prezidentjala, Comisia Prezidentjala Pentru Analiza Riscurilor Sociale si Demografice--Riscuri si inechitali sociale in Romania, septembrie 2009

[2.] Ilie Badescu, Destararea, in Revista Clipa. Magazinul relaitatii culturale romanesti, mai 2010

[3.] Alina--Andreea Cruceru, Analiza statistica a fenomenului migrarei romanilor, Revista Romana de Statistica nr. 11/ 2010

[4.] Dumitru Sandu (Coord.), Locuirea Temporare in Strainatate. Migrana economice a Romanilor: 1990 - 2006, Fundatia pentru o Societate Deschisa, Bucuresti, 2006

[5.] Eurobarometru 74 Opinia Publica In Uniunea Europeana, Toamna 2010, Comisia Europeana

[6.] Ovidiu Voicu, Georgiana Toth, Simina Guga, Imigrant in Romania: perspective si riscuri, Bucuresti: Fundatia Soros Romania, 2008.

(1) Aceasta lucrare a fost finantata din contractul POSDRU/CPP107/DMI1.5/S/78421, proiect strategic ID 78421 (2010), cofinantat din Fondul Social European--Investeste in Oameni, prin Programul Operational Sectorial Dezvoltarea Resurselor Umane 2007-2013.

(2) Alina--Andreea Cruceru, Analiza statistica a fenomenului migrarei romanilor, Revista Romana de Statistica nr. 11/ 2010

(3) Administraba Prezidentiala, Comisia Prezidentiala Pentru Analiza Riscurilor Sociale si Demografice--Riscuri si inechitati sociale in Romania, septembrie 2009, p. 255.

(4) Ovidiu Voicu, Georgiana Toth, Simina Guga, Imigrant in Romania: perspective si riscuri, Bucuresti: Fundatia Soros Romania, 2008.

(5) Alina--Andreea Cruceru, Analiza statistica a fenomenului migrarei romanilor, Revista Romana de Statistica nr. 11/ 2010

(6) Date preluate de la Institutul National de Statistica.

(7) Dumitru Sandu, Migratia de revenire ca proiect si stare de spirit, in D.Sandu (coord) M. Bojinca, V. Grigoras, I.A. Mihai, M.Stefanescu, G.Toth, P.Tufis, Comunitah' Romanesti in Spania. Bucuresti: FSR,

Alexandra PORUMBESCU, University of Craiova, Faculty of Law and Administratives Sciences

The number of people who left Romania
Gender distribution

                  Numarul persoanelor

            Barbati             Femei

Anul     Date     Pondere     Date     Pondere
       absolute     (%)     absolute     (%)

1990    46.335     47,SO     50.594     52,20
1991    21.211     48,03     22.949     51,97
1992    16.085     51,0      15.067     48.37
1993    8.751      47,44     9.695      52,56
1994    7.886      45,99     9.260      5401
1995    11478      44,70     14.197     55,30
1996    10.079     46,82     11.447     53.18
1997    9.423      47,24     10.522     52,76
1998    8.460      48,24     9.076      51,76
1999    5.858      46,51     6.736      53 49
2000    6.798      46.08     7.955      5192
2001     5011      50,51     4.910      49,49
2002    3.700      45,38     4.454      5462
2003    4.413      41,35     6.260      58,65
2004    4.934      37,72     8.14S      62,28
2005    4.110      37,58     5.828      62,42
2006    5.341      37,62     8.856      62,38
2007    3.088      34,97     5.742      65,03
2008    3.069      35,12     5.670      64 88
2009    3.768      36,90     6.443      63.10
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Title Annotation:ORIGINAL PAPER
Author:Porumbescu, Alexandra
Publication:Revista de Stiinte Politice
Article Type:Report
Geographic Code:4E0EE
Date:Oct 1, 2012
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