The City Where Expats Feel at Home

Cluj-Napoca has always been a multicultural city. This can be traced back to the times when King Stephen V of Hungary was set on inviting German colonists to settle in the old capital of the Roman province of Dacia Porolissensis, with the purpose of helping to restore the community severely affected by Mongolian invasions. Traditionally, Cluj-Napoca has been and is still the home of Romanians, Hungarians and Germans, and together with them, of other smaller traditional communities from Transylvania, such as Armenian, Jew, Roma and Greek populations. However, in the last 25 years, the multicultural and multi-ethnic character of the city of Cluj-Napoca has been enriched by the presence of expat communities. The latter have found a welcoming home in Cluj-Napoca as shown in a survey conducted by the European Commission, in the autumn of 2013, which furthermore proclaims Cluj-Napoca as Europe’s most foreigner-friendly city. The findings of this study were confirmed once more at the end of 2013 when a research study funded by the International Organisation for Migration and conducted at the Intercultural Institute of Timisoara and at the Human Rights Defence League in Cluj-Napoca, showed that the community profile in the city of Cluj-Napoca is more comparable to that of other multicultural cities par excellence such as Paris or Brussels, rather than that of Bucharest or Budapest.Foto Steaguri
More than 10,000 foreigners have settled in Cluj-Napoca over the past two and a half decades, a phenomenon which is responsible for implementing a complex network of institutions and civil society structures meant to help expats integrate into the local community. Thus, Cluj-Napoca has become home to various consulates, honorary consulates and honorary vice-consulates such as: The Hungarian General Consulate, The Honorary Consulate of France, The Honorary Consulate of the Netherlands, The Honorary Consulate of Greece, The Honorary Consulate of Turkey, The Vice-Consulate of Italy, and The Honorary Consulate of Poland based in Câmpia Turzii. There is also an impressive network of cultural institutes such as: The French Institute, British Council, The Italian Cultural Centre, The Confucius Cultural Centre, The German Cultural Centre and The Russian Cultural Centre. Business people have also created their own business clubs. Five of the most important have reunited under what is known as The International Committee. Here we have: Cluj Francophone Affairs Club, The German Business Club North Transylvania, The Dutch Business Club, The British Business Group and The Asian Business Group. Furthermore, there is The Spanish Business Group, and the business clubs of Hungarian businessmen such as: Eureka Chamber of Commerce of Carpathia. In addition to business organizations and associations there are also organizations for expat communities such as: Cluj International Women’s Club, The Francophone Students’ Association or Guttenberg, The German Speaking Students’ Association. As a result of foreign investment in Cluj-Napoca, over 100,000 job vacancies have been made available.

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