The Structure of Migration in Estonia: Survey-Based Evidence

Martti Randveer, Tairi Rõõm


This paper presents new evidence from a unique survey of firm managers on migration patterns in Estonia in 2007. An emigrant from Estonia was most likely a young persoon between 15 – 34 years of age, a blue-collar worker and male. Contrary to evidence from other countries and earlier time periods, employees with a low level of education were more likely to emigrate than highly educated workers. We assessed which enterprises were more exposed to the cross-border movement of workers. The vast majority (97%) of emigrants left from private sector enterprises. Most immigrant workers were employed by private sektor companies as well. Firms hiring a larger share of low-skilled blue-collar workers were more exposed to the mobility of international labour. The regression results indicated that the tendency to emigrate was the strongest among construction sector employees; whereas, immigrant workers were most likely hired by manufacturing companies.

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