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[flagged] Poland takes on more temporary foreign workers than USA and Germany – report (thefirstnews.com)
60 points by wrzuteczka 16 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 32 comments

I'd be cautious with this article, it's a portal of the national Polish Press Agency and the link was posted by a 2-hour old account.

“As we have come to realize in recent years, Poland is often portrayed in foreign media not entirely accurately, and we want to gently modify this picture,” the president of the Polish Press Agency said in an interview.

As he went on to say, the aim of the website’s creators is to “reach specific opinion-forming circles” with the help of social media.


The western media has portrayed Poland inaccurately for years now. Decades, even. To anyone who has spent time in the country, it is blatantly obvious. As such, if you're going to suggest caution, I suggest it is toward all media organizations. Which is a good attitude to have in general, IMO.

In which way is it portrayed and what is the reality?

Not saying you shouldn’t be cautious, however, in this case someone already posted a link to the source material from OECD in another comment here.

Yes, I created my account today.

So what's the message that's to be read if you could read between the lines?

Found the original source, apparently at:


though I warn you: it's a long article. I emphatically DON'T suggest changing the link in the original submission to this reader-sleepiness-inducing paper. The original submission is much easier to read, and I just wanted to make sure it's based on real source. I found the source via: http://www.nordiclabourjournal.org/nyheter/news-2019/article... which I found via quick googling.

A relevant quote about Poland that I managed to find in an attempt at quick skimming is in Chapter 1, section "Main findings", bullet point 5:

"For the second consecutive year, Poland was the top OECD destination for temporary labour migrants, with 1.1 million new authorisations delivered to non-EU workers and 21 000 intra-EU posted workers. The United States remained the second most popular destination, with 691 000 new temporary workers in 2017."

Sorry for not linking to the particular Chapter & Section, but deep linking on the particular site seems broken to me (?).

What's so wrong about it? They are doing it basically because they can. They have a source of culturally similar people from much poorer neighboring countries: Ukraine and Belarus.

Plus i have to say, there are also many people who come without those permissions, and they are not illegals: they have right to work as people born in the ex-Polish territory - pre-1939 - having so-called Karta Polaka.


Uh, I absolutely didn't try to suggest that anything is wrong about it!... sorry if you got such an impression :/ I tried rewording my comment now, to hopefully better convey what I meant, trying to avoid using some words that I'm now guessing you maybe understood in some unintended way (?)

Ah no no that's fine, i didn't mean it. It' just that most people probably saw it as somehow bad news or something to criticize Poles about.

The report also contains a page on Poland specifically: https://www.oecd-ilibrary.org/sites/c3e35eec-en/1/2/5/28/ind...

I looked at jobs in Poland after a visit there. Everything was super cheap and it's a beautiful place. However, once you were on Polish wages, things were not super cheap any more.

It's only good if you come from the east, as their wages are even worse compared to their prices.

Or you actually work as a software engineer or for foreign companies as an expat.

> Or you actually work as a software engineer or for foreign companies as an expat.

Even Google doesn't pay that well in Warsaw. You're much better off getting some sort of pseudo-b2b arrangement to a local software house. That gives you a ridiculously low income tax rate of 19%, too.

The average salary in Warsaw (highest in Poland) is 6k PLN. Google (as any reasonable IT company) will pay no less than 20k PLN for senior developers. I would say that it's a pretty good salary even for Warsaw standards...

Of course, B2B contracts are event better, mostly because of lower taxes but they have their own disadvantages (often they can be terminated within a week, you don't have PTOs etc.)

> I would say that it's a pretty good salary even for Warsaw standards

Still less than what you can make working remotely for western European companies.

Not that much less, and the cost of living is geared towards someone making a tenth of what you make. I find I'm saving more than when I was living in a western country.

"working remotely"

Is this to compensate for the large number of Polish workers who have moved to other EU countries?

Exactly. 10-15 years ago and more the situation or workers had been pretty grim in Poland so many people decided to migrate when borders opened.

Now with economy booming the employers are desperate with lack of workers and they are bringing them from wherever they can - Kazakhstan, India etc. Ukraine is the obvious source due to proximity and cultural similarities.


That's at least what I heard from Polish friends that live in Germany. She's an architect, he has a project manager role in construction. Plenty of Polish people in construction in Germany, construction in Poland has lots of Romanians and Ukrainians, because it pays better for Poles to work further West.

Mostly it's because demography is very bad. We had 700 000 kids born yearly in 80s and less than 400 000 in 90s.

But still the "youngest" country in the EU, right? I.e. the country with the most young people.

Also the country with the most independent radio stations and film freaks. And BSD hackers.

Basically we've had the peak in 80s and that generation is now in the most productive years (30s-40s), it's great for economy, but these people will retire in 30 years and the next generations are almost 2 times smaller - it will be hard to balance budget. Especially now that the current government LOWERED the retirement age from 70 to 65 for men and 60 for women.

Clickbait. It's more temporary workers.

They can apply for permanent residence rather easily after working here for 10 years. This influx started in 2014 because of war, so I'd expect the permanent residence permits to hike in 2024. Also there's a shortcut if you can find any Polish nationality ancestor (and it's quite common as Poland and Ukraine were one country for half of their history).

From anegdotal evidence it doesn't seem that the influx has stopped, 5 years ago it was rare to hear anybody speaking Russian/Ukrainian on the street, now it's a daily ocurrence.

Similar to Polish people having German passports because their families lived in the former German areas before WW II. Germany and The Netherlands had lots of Polish workers for three decades already because of that, long before they joined the EU.

Poland has a populist government, and alt-right movements flaring up a strong anti-immigration sentiment (especially against anyone from the east). So while permanent residence may be an option, or for some people a desperate need, it's not a pleasant one.

The government is populist and very bad, but on this matter it's actually pro-Ukrainian. They gathered support creating anti-Muslim histeria, Ukrainians shouldn't have any problems with that.

Ukrainian and Polish are very similar languages and after 1 year you can learn the other one and speak with no recognizable accent (my cousin's wife is Ukrainian and nobody realizes that till she tells them).

There are nationalists that do have problems with imigrtion from Ukraine and Russia, but they are a marginal minority, not unlike the nationalists in UK protesting Polish immigration. They don't represent the mainstream opinion and aren't a threat in 99.99% of situations.

How did you come into such conclusion? I live in Poland and I do not agree with it. At least in southern part (Silesia, Katowice) we are really happy about the immigrants from east. They are really good workers, they have no problem in learning language, and are really similar when it comes to family and moral values.

I'm not Polish but I've spent a fair bit of time in Warsaw and I'd say the majority of people there are fine with it too - I mean, they complain but I wouldn't say they're actively opposed either. I do genuinely wonder if it might be a generational thing - I've noticed some of the older population aren't quite as happy.

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