Norway Is Best to Integrate Refugee Women

The introductory integration programs help refugee women to get a faster job in Norway and Sweden than in other European countries.

The report, prepared by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and Kristian Tronstad at Oslo Metropolitan University, reveals that 45 per cent of refugee women in Norway were employed after five years of residence in Norway.

It is higher than countries such as Germany (20 percent) and Austria (18 percent).

The Scandinavian countries stand out with a comprehensive introductory program compared with other countries in Europe, Tronstad states to NTB.

– It’s not that the refugees coming to Norway are easier to integrate,” he notes.

The report shows that 40-45 percent of the refugees in Europe are women, and several factors make difficult to get a job for them. They often have less education, they strive more to learn the language and have poorer health. They also have smaller networks. Employment among male refugees is higher than for women.

– Although women have lower formal competence and come to Norwegian labor market which has high standards of formal competence and education, many of them still work,” says Tronstad.

Nevertheless, it is a fact that the employment for refugee women never reaches the same level as other women in Norway and Sweden.

According to Tronstad and OECD economist Thomas Liebig, the recent report shows that it is worth investing in such introduction programs.

About the Norwegian introduction program

Refugees and their families who have been granted a residence permit in Norway are obliged to complete an introductory programme. All municipalities that settle refugees are to offer the programme.

The right and obligation to participate in an introduction programme apply to newly arrived foreign nationals between 18 and 55 years of age who need to obtain basic qualifications and who have been granted asylum.

The introduction programme is designed for persons who need to obtain basic qualifications.

The programme may run for up to two years, with additional periods for approved leaves of absence.

As soon as possible and within three months after a person is settled in a municipality, the municipality has to provide an introduction programme

Refugees receive economical support whilst participating in the introductory programme.

Individually adapted plan

An individually adapted plan is provided for any person who is to participate in an introduction programme. It shall be formulated on the basis of an identification of the training needs of the person concerned and of the measures that may be useful to the person.

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