Eastern workers enjoy wider EU job choice

BRUSSELS, May 1 (UPI) -- Workers of Eastern European countries that joined the European Union two years ago have seen only a small opening of EU-wide employment opportunities.

Job opportunities have been gradually opening in the first 15 EU nations, many of which have restricted free entry of labor force from the 10 nations that joined the bloc May 1, 2004, the EuroNews television channel reported.


Only Sweden, Britain and Ireland widely opened doors from the beginning for workers from the newly joined states, while other countries placed restrictions, fearing cheap labor would flood their markets and take jobs from local workers.

EU Employment Commissioner Vladimir Spidla described this as "a big step forward."

The European Commission said the economies of Britain, Ireland and Sweden have benefited from opening their job markets, while countries with restrictions risk people working there illegally and not paying taxes.

Latest Headlines