1,3 million Ukrainians currently in Germany

57% of Ukrainians in Germany see their children's future in Germany, only 39% in Ukraine. This could be interpreted as praise for Germany - especially in contrast to the Netherlands, where only 29% of Ukrainians see the future of their children. In contrast to the ever-nagging Germans, almost the whole world still looks at us with admiration. And that is connected to the idea that it would be great to live in Germany. This has nothing to do with social welfare. Only German politicians with blinders on, who can neither talk to people from other countries nor put themselves in their perspective, have this strange idea of ​​immigration into the welfare state. On the other hand: If 57 percent of Ukrainians see their children's future in Germany, this could lead to a massive brain drain in Ukraine.

These are the key data about Ukrainians in Germany and, in comparison, in the Netherlands:

One million three hundred thousand Ukrainians are currently in Germany. This emerges from a study that was presented today in Berlin. Millions of Ukrainian refugees fled war after Russia invaded in February 2022, the investigation says. The European Union has granted temporary protection status, meaning there are currently over 4 million refugees within its borders. Germany and the Netherlands are among the EU member states that have taken in more than a third of all refugees. Since August 2022, the number of Ukrainian refugees in Germany has increased steadily, reaching a peak of over 2024 million in March 1,26. The number of refugees has also increased in the Netherlands, albeit more slowly. In March 2024, almost 120.000 Ukrainians were registered there.

The report presents the results of a sociological study entitled “Unlocking the potential of Ukrainian citizens in Germany and the Netherlands”. The survey was conducted by the EWL group in collaboration with the Center for Eastern European Studies at the University of Warsaw. Ewald König invited people to this presentation.

The survey, conducted March 18-30, 2024, collected responses from 800 adult Ukrainian citizens currently living in Germany and the Netherlands, describing their experiences as migrant workers and war refugees. Central topics: 

  • Factors that influenced the choice of Germany as a destination country for Ukrainian citizens during the conflict 
  • Employment status and opportunities for Ukrainian citizens in Germany 
  • Access to financial support and social assistance 
  • Recommendations and opinions about work and life in Germany 
  • Average monthly income and plans for long-term stay 
  • Interested in further training and development opportunities 

67 percent of Ukrainians in Germany work, and another 13 percent are about to start work. 85 percent are women. Ukrainians in Germany have a very high level of education and language skills that improve their chances. Seventy-four percent of respondents in Germany have a university degree or university experience. In addition, more than half of Ukrainians reported that they can communicate well in English, which makes their integration into society easier. In Germany, 48% of respondents said they spoke German.

Half of Ukrainians in Germany say they entered the country with children under 18. More than half of them use both education systems. In Germany, around a quarter (24%) of Ukrainian children attend exclusively the German system.

63% of Ukrainians in Germany and 81% of Ukrainians in the Netherlands receive financial support from their host country. This situation reflects
reflects the reality of refugees, who often do not have a sufficient source of income. Despite the fact that 44% of respondents in Germany and 40% in the Netherlands say that they can actually support themselves with financial support, they decide to work. This is a very optimistic sign that Ukrainian citizens in the EU need the proverbial rod, not the fish.

The number of Ukrainians in Germany has increased steadily after Russia's full invasion of Ukraine on February 24, 2022.

Why Germany? Family and friends have had good experiences, there are already friends or family in Germany - these are the main reasons.

56% of Ukrainians in Germany speak English, and 52% have German at a level with which they can communicate. Most Ukrainians, 85%, have not worked in any other country before. Of the 15% who have already worked elsewhere, 58% were in Poland and 37% in Germany. This is followed by the Czech Republic with 14% and Italy and the USA with 10% each.

It's also interesting how work was found. 44% found an employer themselves, 22% were helped by friends and family, and only 17% were placed through an employment agency or government agency. 4% said: “The employer found me!”

The average net income is 1.334 euros per month, almost half are above this. There are hardly any complaints. 12% feel they are paid very well or well, and 70% feel they are paid averagely.

This is also a positive confirmation of how the Ukrainians have been welcomed here - and also a praise for our working world. Three quarters of Ukrainians in Germany would tell friends and relatives at home that working in Germany is totally OK!

Nevertheless, the question arises as to what would motivate Ukrainians to return: more money at home and better working conditions, but almost as many think that if Ukraine were in NATO or at least in the EU - that would be a reason to go home to the family to return.

Something else to put into perspective: Ukraine has 38 million inhabitants. They grew up in peace for a long time, relatively in peace, but with the occupation of the Crimean parts of Donbas in violation of international law since the spring of 2014. We, on the other hand, are celebrating 75 years of the Basic Law today. Since the unconditional surrender on May 8, 1945, we have not had war, but we have had constantly growing prosperity. Most Ukrainians stay in the country. Many go to the front, including women. We know midwives, museum people, doctors, tourism women, car repairmen, journalists, catering employees - we know quite a few who all stayed in Ukraine and are fighting for their place. Most have children. Actually everyone. This last paragraph is not a judgment against those who are with us in Germany or the EU. Feelings and fates are absolutely individual. Our job is simply to help Ukraine win this war.