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Austrian labor market opening triggers no influx from Hungary

Since Austria opened up its labor market for job seekers from central and eastern Europe, some 3,000 Hungarians have found jobs there, data from the Austrian Social Affairs Ministry showed.

The figures did not justify earlier expectations of a large influx of workers from Hungary and other EU members that joined the community in 2004.

Apart from Hungarians, some 2,500 people from Poland, 1,500 from Slovakia and a few hundred people from Slovenia and the Czech Republic had arrived in Austria to find jobs during the past month, the ministry's report said.

The Austrian labor market offers 3.4 million jobs; currently 84,000 positions are occupied by employees from central and eastern Europe.

As the last two pre-2004 members of the EU to maintain labor restrictions for new entrants, Germany and Austria liberalized their labor markets on May 1.

Several members still apply restrictions against Bulgaria and Romania that joined the EU in 2007.