Expats move to Spain for better quality of life
13 April 2006
ALICANTE — European expats choose to move to Spain for the quality of life, a study finds.
The report, by the European Observatory for Social Tendencies based at the University of Alicante, focused on migration within the European Union.
Sociologists from Alicante University worked with colleagues in Britain, France and Germany to compile the report.
They found most expats come to Spain and France to improve their quality of life, while people move to Germany and Britain for work.
But if they want to embark on a more ‘romantic stage’ of their lives, they move to Italy.
People also go to Britain for academic reasons, researchers found.
Spaniards who move abroad feel more nostalgic about their own country than other European expats and have the strongest desire to return home.
In the past twenty years, Spaniards who moved abroad to live have improved the knowledge of foreign languages among their countrymen and women, the report said.
But expats who move to Spain admit to having a “minimal knowledge” of Spanish.
Britons and Germans were the worst at learning Spanish but feel “well integrated psychologically”.
They adopt the Spanish style of life “without feeling rejected”.
Oscar Santacreu, one of the research team, said about ten percent of EU citizens move country and half of those move within the EU.
The study found that there is a rising feeling among expats of belonging to Europe which makes them feel like they are simply moving rather than emigrating abroad.
The study was carried out by telephone interviews with European residents in the four countries.
The number of people questioned was not given.
[Copyright EFE with Exaptica]
Subject: Spanish news