Portugal is among the worst countries for immigrant women to work – Observer


In 2018, Portugal was elected one of the 10 best countries for those who live in the emigre. Quality of life, safety and ease of adaptation were identified as positive factors for expatriates (those who grew up in one country but lived in another, for personal or professional reasons). But if you divide opinions taking into account gender, the scenario becomes quite different. While on ranking InterNations, Portugal ranked 6th in 68 countries, the opinion of foreign women working in Portuguese territory leads Portugal to occupy the last table places.

For the founder of InterNations and Co-CEO Malte Zeeck, the results of the survey may mirror gender differences: "The results (…) leave us to question whether women have the same opportunities as men when it comes to combining their career abroad with family life," he summarizes. Women surveyed point to at least two factors: lower wages than they would have earned in their country of origin and workplace dissatisfaction, something men had not pointed out to the same extent.

The work of InterNations, the world's largest expatriate community, gathered responses from 8,855 expatriate women and concluded that women are generally less likely to go abroad (25%) than men (38% ). And women are more likely to be single and have no children. The study is based on International Women's Day (celebrated on March 8).

To find Portugal in the ranking, you need to scroll down to the bottom of the table. Portugal is among the worst countries for expatriates to work, occupying the 41st place in 57 countries. With regard to career prospects, only 38% of women are satisfied to work on Portuguese soil (against 42% of men). Regarding the safety at work, half of the women surveyed are satisfied, compared to 58% of men. Already the the balance between personal and professional life is the factor that has the highest satisfaction among respondents, with 72% of women admitting that in Portugal they achieve this balance, compared to 74% of men.

On the other hand, the Czech Republic (1st), Bahrain (2nd) and Taiwan (3rd) take the podium of the best countries for foreign women to work. To these three, Norway (4th), Denmark (5th), Luxembourg (6th), New Zealand (7th), Netherlands (8th), Malta ( 9) and Australia (10th) as the countries where women feel happier with their professional life. But there we go.

Despite being the 41st place in the ranking of the best countries for expatriates to work, Portugal rose in position when compared to previous years, when it was among the last ten places in the table. According to the InterNations, among the reasons for this rise could be the "high level of satisfaction with the career prospects" that Portugal currently offers women. If in 2017 only 26% said they were satisfied, by 2018 that number rose to 38%.

The balance is, after all, positive. And it seems to contrast with the results of the investigation. For Alina Di-Bella, a Mexican immigrant, "Portugal is a small country, but it has the advantages of a great country". She works as a consultant in a Portuguese technology company in the area of ​​international business, and says she has never felt discrimination.

To the Observer, Alina says that she arrived in Portugal in 2016, having decided to go to Europe, send resumes to several countries and Portugal was "the first to respond and show interest".

For this 30-year-old immigrant, they are more the strengths than the weaknesses. It highlights the fact that it has learned a new language, the "opportunity for international visibility", and "professional and personal development". "There are many network, and Lisbon is a small city but one that is at the level of other major cities in the world.

The biggest disadvantage is "there are no direct flights to Mexico", as well as the traveling expenses are very expensive. "If I had an order from Germany, I would go to Mexico more often", admits. But when she compares wages in Portugal with those of Mexicans, Alina says they are "more or less the same," but stresses that costs in Lisbon are higher: "I pay for a quarter what my sister pays for a whole house In Mexico".

Alina also considers that, although "very affable", the Portuguese are somewhat "closed", and bureaucracies and some lack of communication as negative points. But she always felt welcomed by Portugal, stating categorically: "Portugal welcomes immigrants well, but I do not know if it is the same for all nationalities."

Miryam Laura Silva is 43 years old and came to Portugal 21 years ago, "by height of Expo 98". As "he had the duty to help his parents," he decided to leave Peru. The choice of the host country came naturally, since Miryam's father had already come to Europe to work, both of them ending up in Portugal.

"It is a quieter country with very accessible people, and the gastronomy is very similar to ours", sums up the Observer. Currently working at a clothing company in the Colombo Shopping Center in Lisbon, she also says she has never felt gender discrimination at work. The main disadvantage encountered by this immigrant is transversal to all the testimonies heard by the Observer: bureaucracies, that is, "The difficulty and waiting times in getting documentation".

Mother of two children, 14 and 12 years old, Miryam also highlights the good balance between personal and professional life. He feels that there are wage differences between men and women, but admits that "women are gaining a more prominent role, they are being heard more." Compared to Peru, he says that wages are lower in his country of origin, and he feels that in Portugal "there is work", however, one must "work to achieve something".

Marta Thomé, 62, a Mexican, came to live in Portugal for different reasons. I'm in love with Portugal, tells the Observer, but it was another passion that made her leave her country. She met her husband, Portuguese, in 2009, visited Portugal in 2011, and in 2012 she settled in the country.

The speech, this, seems not to be very different from those already heard. The independent worker, with a business in the Mexican gastronomy sector, highlights bureaucracies as a negative point of working in Portugal: "The bureaucracies for a foreigner are more time consuming". Martha reveals no discrimination in the labor market between men and women, and, with her own happiness associated with Latinas, explains that she is "very happy to be here."

Considers that wages "are fair", identical to those practiced in Mexico, but that the cost of living "here is higher". Already the adaptation to a new country, for Martha, was "very easy".

Still, not everything is roses. The lack of protection of the immigrant is quickly pointed out by a Ukrainian heard by the Observer. She lives in Portugal since 2000, has 52 and is a maid. "It's easy to get a job if we're talking about unqualified employment," he explains. He has the status of foreign resident and did not ask for Portuguese nationality because he does not want to. The disadvantages? There are some: it says that "it is very easy to be replaced" in the labor market and says that is not protected "from the legal point of view". Still, this Ukrainian immigrant, who has a daughter, underlines the "hospitality" of the Portuguese.

"Bureaucracies, bureaucracies, bureaucracies". This is how Ulrika Karnland also describes what he says is one of the worst factors for the adaptation of foreigners in Portugal. In a video shared on YouTube, Swedish refers to the high waiting times for official documents. However, it highlights the good climate and the hospitality of the Portuguese.

According to the study of InterNationsthe "Low wages" in Portugal are one of the main negative factors pointed out by immigrant women. In terms of salaries, only 20% of the respondents said they received more than they would receive in an identical position in their country of origin. This number becomes especially low when compared to global responses – 50% of women say they get the best in the country they have chosen to emigrate to.

Job satisfaction is also lower among women working in Portugal, with 53% of expatriates evaluating the country positively, compared to 68% among men.

Career perspectives, the balance between personal and professional life, and work safety were factors evaluated by the InterNations – who drew up this ranking based on inquiry Expat Insider 2018. In overall terms, 28% of emigrated women underline the love or the employment / education of their fellow as the main motivation for moving abroad. Only 25% indicate reasons related to their own career. On the other hand, emigrant men mainly point out reasons related to work (38%) to emigrate, against only 13%, which refer to amorous reasons.

Already the Education Level seems to be the factor that brings the two genders closer together in terms of numbers: as in men, women working abroad tend to have high levels of education, with about 9 out of 10 women (89%) and men (85% ) to be, at least, graduates. But the differences between expatriate men and women are again felt if we look at personal issues.

According to the InterNations, 56% of women working abroad are engaged, representing 15 percentage points below the percentage of expatriate men who are engaged (71%). Regarding children, 63% of expatriate women say they do not have children, compared to 47% of men in the same situation.

The best country for women to work is delivered to the Czech Republic, which in no more than a year increased by no less than eight ranking. According to the InterNations, 83% of immigrant women said they were happy with their jobs – a figure well above that of men (72%).

The conclusion is simple and surprising, given the overall results: when it comes to assessing the lives of expatriates on Czech territory by gender, the results are the reverse, ie the women rate the country more positively than men. Another example of this is that women emigrated in the Czech Republic are more satisfied with career prospects (73%) than male emigrants (63%).

However, only 38% of respondents working in the Czech Republic said they received more than in their country of origin, compared with 50% of all women working abroad.

In the second place of the ranking, follow the Bahrain – which by 2017 had been voted as the best country for foreign women to work. Bahrain thus loses its place at the top of the table, but continues to be well placed in the ranking (2nd place). Nearly 9 out of 10 expatriate women (88%) are generally satisfied with their jobs in Bahrain, compared to 62% for women globally.

Already the Taiwan occupies the last place of the podium, being that in 2017 was in the 11th place. According to the InterNations(72% in 2018, compared to 60% in 2017), as well as career prospects (66% in 2018, compared to 59% in 2017).

O ranking of the best countries for women to live abroad, whether for personal or professional reasons, was based on the inquiry Expat Insider 2018. Portugal occupies the 6th place in 68 countries globally; with the focus on the expatriate woman, Portugal appears in the position 41 of the 57 counted countries – this last study did not include so many countries, "since not all countries registered enough women to work" to be representative in the ranking, explained to the Observer the person in charge of the department of communication and public relations of the InterNations.

To develop the ranking whole group – which later focused on women's responses – InterNations questioned more than 18,000 expatriates from 178 nationalities living in 187 countries or territories. Six sub-indices were evaluated: quality of life, ease of adjustment, work abroad, family life, personal finances and cost of living.

Although in 2018 it has dropped from 5th to 6th place (outdated by Singapore), Portugal remains one of the ten places in the world for those who live in. Some of the categories in which Portugal received the most points were quality of life, safety, ease of adaptation and climate. The "complaints" pointed out by foreigners living in Portugal are again related to bureaucracies, but also with little encouraging career prospects and heavy taxes.

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