In 2014, entrepreneurs and small-business owners with foreign backgrounds created some 1.3 million jobs in Germany, according to a new report.
The study, put out by the Bertelsmann Foundation, one of Germany’s largest nonprofits, found a 36 percent rise in such job creation over the past decade; This advance came while the number of people with immigrant backgrounds in Germany increased by just 9 percent during the same period.
“We show with our study that people with a migrant background in Germany do not take away jobs from anyone–quite the opposite,” said Aart de Geus, chairman of the Bertelsmann Foundation, as cited by Deutsche Welle.
The new data comes at a moment when the conversation on immigration and the role of foreigners in German society has taken a darker turn. Starting in 2015, the influx of hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees and other asylum seekers has roiled German politics. German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who had opened Germany’s doors to those fleeing Syria, has suffered considerable political blowback after asylum seekers were implicated in incidents of sexual harassment and violence.