Graz is the economic, scientific and cultural hub of southeast Austria. The city has a long tradition as a university town and there are more than 10,000 businesses, predominantly small to medium sized, and a strong trading and services sector. According to the European Commission, Graz, as the regional economic center, is responsible for around 40% of jobs in Styria. Graz’s industrial sector is the main contributor to the economy and it is the capital of the Austrian automotive industry. The city is home to a number of leading vehicle manufacturers and mass produces not only mechanical parts, but also entire vehicles.
Graz has a thriving creative industry and also leads the way for the environmental technology and renewable energy sectors. Food and drink production also contribute to the local economy. Styria’s culinary specialties include bread (there are many local varieties, from seeded Kornkasten to Semmelwecken rolls), Vulcano ham, pumpkin seed oil, wines and beers.
Before expatriates can start working in Graz, they need a work permit according to the Law for the Employment of Foreigners (AuslBG), with the exception of residents of EU/EEA countries and Switzerland.
For any expat planning to relocate to Austria, being able to speak German is essential, while training and higher education qualifications are desirable. You might already have a job lined up through your current employer — if not, the Public Employment Service (AMS) offers comprehensive advice to anyone in Austria looking for work, and has information about local vacancies. The Graz branch is located in the center of the city on Neutorgasse.. Other useful job websites include:
Employment in Austria is either on a permanent basis or for a limited term. Verbal employment contracts are valid, although in accordance with EU directives, employers must, within one month and in writing, inform the employee about their terms of employment. Job conditions and other terms between employers and employees are regulated in Austria to a large extent through collective agreements between trade unions and employer organizations. A very high proportion of people working in Austria are trade union members.
In Austria, your employer deducts tax directly from your salary. The income tax brackets are as follows:
Up to 10,999 EUR – 0%
11,000 EUR to 25,000 EUR – 36.5%
25,001 EUR to 60,000 EUR – 43.2%
Over 60,000 EUR – 50%
More information about tax matters can be found on the Austrian Federal Ministry of Finance website.