BERLIN, Nov. 21 (Xinhua) -- Germany is attracting more immigrants from Eastern Europe and countries hit by the euro crisis, the Federal Statistical Office said on Thursday.
Some 555,000 people moved into Germany in the first half of the year, 11 percent more than a year earlier, data showed. Meanwhile, about 349,000 people moved away from Germany.
The majority of foreign immigrants to Germany came from Poland, Romania and Bulgaria.
The number of immigrants from countries hit by the euro crisis also increased by a large margin, figures showed. Year on year, there were 39 percent more immigrants from Spain, 26 percent more from Portugal and 41 percent more Italy. However the number of immigrants from Greece decreased by 4.5 percent during the same period.
In addition, about 6,000 migrants came from Syria, representing a 178-percent rise.
As a result of the strong immigration, the number of people employed in Germany in September rose to over 42 million for the first time.
"The companies don't find the needed workforce among remaining unemployed in Germany any more, but from abroad," said Christian Schulz, an economist of Berenberg Bank.