While Swedish unemployment figures have seen a slight decline on average, there still remains a massive discrepancy between the unemployment rate of native Swedes and those born overseas.
The new figures, released by the Swedish Public Employment Service, show that unemployment across the country has gone down from 7.3 percent last year to 6.9 percent.
For native Swedes the unemployment rate has declined from 3.9 to 3.6 percent, which if taken alone would give native Swedes one of the lowest unemployment rates in the European Union, tied with Hungary and only being beaten by Germany and the Czech Republic according to Eurostat figures from June of this year.
While the foreign-born unemployment rate has seen a slight decline as well, it remains much higher than the native Swedish rate at 19.9 percent, down from 21.8 percent in 2017. When compared to other European Union countries, only Greece has such a high rate with 20.2 percent.
The statistics come as the Swedish government has called for even more immigration, this time of skilled workers, to fill jobs in Sweden in sectors that have a high demand for new highly-skilled employees.
While the migrant crisis saw well over a hundred thousand asylum seekers flood into Sweden during and after 2015, many have complained that the new arrivals lack the proper skills to enter the Swedish labour force.
A report from the Swedish Employment Service last year showed that very few new migrants were even interested in pursuing education to achieve vocational qualifications, claiming that only three to four percent have expressed any interest in schooling at all.
Schools with large amounts of migrant-background pupils, particularly in so-called “vulnerable areas” commonly referred to as no-go areas, are also failing to graduate with up to half of the pupils in a school in the Stockholm suburb of Rinkeby failing pass into high school.
A German study released in 2016 argued that mass migration will be harmful to long-term economic growth, rather than a boon to the overall economy of a country as has previously been claimed.Pompeo and de Mistura discuss return of Syrian refugees