The labour market outcomes of migrant workers are typically different from those of native workers. Several factors may be responsible for this, the main of which are usually identified in the different educational/skill levels – in general, the different socio-demographic background – and the lack of fluency in the host-country language. However, even when comparing migrants with native-born individuals homogeneous in terms of observed characteristics, other unobservable factors – e.g. the non-transferability of skills that migrants have acquired in their home country; discriminatory practices excluding migrants from the most qualifying jobs; attitudes of migrants who might be available to accept low-skilled or low-paid jobs where demand is high and the supply of local manpower is scarce – may still be responsible for different labour market patterns and outcomes.
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