Eastern Europe may not like refugees but needs them more than other countries
WITH their pristine rooms and green courtyard, the new psychiatric clinic and geriatric and dermatological wards cost $19m. But what the hospital in Bydgoszcz in north-west Poland does not have is enough nurses and carers. As a result it can only fill half of its 236 beds. Such labour shortages are common in eastern Europe. Construction, manufacturing and technology firms are struggling to find enough workers. And shortages are likely to get worse as populations age rapidly.
Meanwhile, eastern European governments have been among the most vocal opponents of plans to relocate refugees across the EU. Poles and Czechs have joined Hungarians in refusing to accommodate migrants, who are often young and educated. This ignores economic logic.