Research Papers

Impact of Syrian Refugees in Germany

1. Introduction
The Syrian conflict has created a refugee crisis, especially in Europe and other neighboring countries such as Turkey and Germany. The influx of these refugees into the Turkish and German economies has had a significant negative impact on the level of their economic growth and development. The following report focuses on the impact of the influx of Syrian refugees on the Germany economy, which is by far the European country with the largest numbers of refugees. The analysis compares it to France, another economic powerhouse in Europe, but with a lower scale of refugees compared to its counterpart. As such, the analysis reviews the economic impact of the Syrian refugee crisis on the German economy as compared to its French counterpart, which receives low volumes of refugees.

2. Economic Effect of the Syrian Refugee Crisis on Germany
The influx of Syrian refugees has had a major economic impact on the affected countries, especially those that opened their borders to these refugees, such as Germany. France was a little reluctant to open its borders to these Syrian refugees, and as such, only reported small numbers of them as opposed to its German counterpart.

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As a result, German bore the greatest consequences of the Syrian refugees influx on is economy compared to France, especially in line with the levels of economic growth and development as well as the rate of employment or unemployment across the country. In fact, it is notable that the influx of refugees to the country has had a significant negative effect on the economy, as evidenced by key parameters of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and Employment rates. This is especially considering the fact that these refugees either drain or contribute to the economy. In the case of Germany, the government spent about 0.7% of its GDP on immigrants, mostly comprising of Syrian refugees. Nonetheless, the expatriates in the country generated an addition 0.4% of the country’s GDP. This is different from the case in France whereby there have been no significant changes on economic growth attributable to immigrants.

As mentioned above, the best parameters of measuring the economic effect of the Syrian refugee crisis on the selected European economies is by examining their respective GDPs as well as rates of unemployment. From this perspective, it is notable that Germany has been a major beneficiary in terms of GDP growth since the beginning of the crisis. Its GDP was US $ 3,545,946 million in 2012 at the beginning of the crisis, but it surged to US $ 3,904,921 million by 2014, marking a 2.2% rise. This trend changed in 2015 when the country’s GDP rate dropped to US $ 3,383,091 million. The decline in GDP value is attributable to the country’s economic commitment to refugees, as the government provides them with free essential amenities such as food, clothing, medical care, and in some cases, education. As such, Germany reported a positive economic growth in 2016 whereby its GDP was US $ 3,479,232 million in 2016 and US $ 3, 7000,000 million in 2017. From these regression reports, it is notable that Germany’s acceptance of Syrian immigrants has had a positive impact on its economic performance.

However, the similar fortunes were not registered in France, as it did not accept large numbers of immigrants. As such, even though France also registered a positive economic growth since the beginning of the Syrian refugee crisis, its fortunes were not as great as its German’s counterpart. In 2012, the country’s GDP was US $ 2,685,311 million, US $ 2,856,697 million in 2014, US $ 2,439,435 million in 2015, US $ 2,466,472 million in 2016 and $ 2,600,000 million in 2017. The statistics are much lower for France compared to Germany, which accepted more immigrants than itself. These changes in economic growth are attributable to the fact that when immigrants come into a country, they rely in government provisions in the beginning. But later on, after they have settled and integrated into the country, they support economic growth and development through employment of engaging in other income generating activities, which the government can tax and raise revenue from.

The Syrian refugees’ crisis has also had a significant impact on the unemployment rates in both countries. The reason for this assertion is that refugees provide cheap skilled and unskilled labor for the two economies to exploit, but also exert pressure on the few available employment opportunities in the country. Furthermore, these refugees, some of them being entrepreneurial, engaged in creativity and innovation activities, thereby creating their own jobs as opposed to seeking gainful employment. In this regard, it is notable that the German economy has registered a significant drop in its rates of unemployment since the influx of refugees from 5.4 in 2012, to 5.2 in 2013, 5.0 in 2014, 4.6 in 2015, 4.2 in 2016 and 3.8 in 2017. As such, this proves that immigrants have had a positive impact on the country’s unemployment rates. A similar trend is reported in France, which had unemployment rates of 9.8 in 2012, 10.3 in 2013, 10.3 in 2014, 10.4 in 2015, 10.1 in 2016 and 9.4 in 2017. The rise in unemployment rates was attributable to its stubbornness in accepting refugees, which changed immediately it opened its borders to immigrants.

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Works Cited
“GDP (Current US$).” The World Bank, Accessed 15 Dec. 2018.
“Unemployment, Total (% of Total Labor Force) (Modeled ILO Estimate).” The World Bank, Accessed 15 Dec. 2018.