LifestyleCroatians return home as Germany loses appeal amid rising costs

Croatians return home as Germany loses appeal amid rising costs

On German streets, one can encounter people of various nationalities (illustrative photo)
On German streets, one can encounter people of various nationalities (illustrative photo)
Images source: © Adobe Stock

10 July 2024 15:21

For the first time since Croatia joined the European Union, fewer Croatians have left for Germany than have returned from that country. As the Danas portal highlights, Germany is no longer the "promised land."

For years, Germany was one of those countries where many Europeans went to improve their standard of living. The Danas portal quoted Milan from Croatia, who decided to return with his family to the Adriatic after 11 years. "It's not that Croatia has improved significantly, but Germany is becoming less and less attractive. Wages are rising slightly, and the cost of living is exploding," admitted Milan.

Croats are returning home

According to data from the German Federal Statistical Office, in 2023, just over 20,000 Croatians emigrated across the western border, while over 24,000 returned.

By the end of 2023, 434,035 Croatian citizens lived in Germany. Although the number of people coming from Croatia to Germany has been steadily decreasing since 2019, this year marked the first time since Croatia joined the European Union that fewer Croatians left for Germany than returned.

Croatian Minister of Demography Ivan Szipić admitted that "true success" would come when young families start returning to the country. The politician also announced special tax incentives for returnees.

The situation in Europe

The same trend can be observed in other new European Union member states, such as Romania and Bulgaria, where the number of citizens migrating to Germany has systematically decreased for the past five years. At the same time, the number of immigrants from Kosovo and North Macedonia is slightly increasing.

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