What if the crisis exodus caused by the crisis was not quite as massive as we believe? This is the question asked by a recent study from the Elcano Royal Institute. Based on information gathered from the Spanish consulates, the researcher Carmen González Enríquez notes that only two percent of nationals living abroad are Spanish citizens who left because of the crisis. That is just 39.912 people.
But what if the reality were different? This is what Amparo González Ferrer, a sociologist and demographics specialist at the CSIC National Research Council, claims. She says that the number of emigrants who left the country between 2008 and 2012 is close to 700.000.
That Spain is losing population to emigration is unquestionable in the view of data. But how many Spaniards are actually leaving due to the economic situation? There is a debate among the scientific community because of the absence of a statistical mechanism that can quickly and efficiently register the departure of nationals. González Enríquez feels that the concern over emigration is related to the fact that Spanish society “has been exceptionally static over the last few decades”. According to the researcher, staying close to family and friends “has been a priority for the majority”, which would explain the reticence to leave the country. Now, the majority of people leaving are university educated, that is, highly qualified. “For them, being able to go abroad and find a job is the best option.”
1. Say if the following statements, according to the text, are true or false:
1.1. There is a disparity of opinions in relation to the number of Spanish citizens who have left the country because of the crisis.
1.2. Spanish population in general do not like living far from their family and friends.
1.3. Most of the emigrants nowadays are people without higher qualifications.
2. Match each term from the text with its corresponding definition:
a) people who leave their own country in order to live in another one
b) a person who studies something and tries to discover facts about it
c) information that can be analyzed
d) not moving or changing
3. Complete each sentence with a suitable verb tense:
3.1. Esteve ___ (add) that most of the emigrants are in fact foreigners who return to their own countries.
3.2. We are ___ (see) a readjustment of immigrants and emigrants.
3.3. It is a cause of concern that people cannot ____ (develop) professionally in Spain.
3.4. González Ferrer ___ (request) information from Britain and found that the statistics were inexact.
4. Write a paragraph (between 50 - 80 words) on one of these topics:
4.1. If you could, would you leave your country in search of better opportunities? Why? Why not?
4.2. Do you think Spanish people value family and friends more than other nationalities? Why? Why not?