Nearly 40% of Foreign Workers Left Romania Following Partial Schengen Accession

About 35-40 per cent of foreign workers have left Romania following the country’s accession to the Schengen zone by air and sea, according to recruitment agency representatives.

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In addition to foreign recruitment agencies, such a situation has impacted Romanian employers who need the foreign workforce to tackle labour shortages, Schengen.News reports.

Yosef Gavriel Peisakh, General Manager at the recruitment agency “Work from Asia”, told that foreign workers are leaving Romania to find better-paid jobs in Europe.

We are talking here about workers who don’t even come to us in the country anymore because they want to earn more money than they can get in Romania. According to our estimates, from the date of Romania’s entry into Schengen, until now, a percentage of approximately 35-40% of foreign workers have already left the country.

Yosef Gavriel Peisakh, General Manager at “Work from Asia”

Foreigners Who Violate Schengen Laws Risk Losing Their Fundamental Rights

However, holders of a Romanian work permit are not entitled to work in other Schengen countries. They can enter any Schengen country as visitors for stays up to 90 days within any 180-day period.

In light of this trend of leaving Romania for another member state, Peiskah warns that foreigners who try to work under such circumstances put themselves at risk, such as being stopped at the borders by respective authorities.

He further said that with the newly launched eDAC application, control bodies can verify individuals’ status in a few seconds after scanning their identity documents.

Moreover, they risk losing their fundamental rights, and we are talking here about social protection, job security, non-compliance with working hours, and rest time.

Yosef Gavriel Peisakh, General Manager at “Work from Asia”

Romania Reported Over 150 Shortage Occupations

In addition to the departure of foreign workers, Romania is already grappling with labour shortages. More specifically, the 2023 Report on shortages and surpluses identified 154 shortage occupations across several sectors in Romania.

Obtaining visas has also become more challenging since the applications need approval from both the National Visa Center in Romania and Schengen countries, prolonging the process. Moreover, Peiskah said that Romanian consulate staff are stricter in interviews, leading to more rejections.

Employers, who are in dire need of the labour force, complain in turn that the process after the final selection of candidates is taking longer and longer, in some cases it can even take a year.

Yosef Gavriel Peisakh, General Manager at “Work from Asia”

Taking into account the above-mentioned issues, employers have suggested, among others, that Romanian authorities launch an info campaign in English, warning foreign workers about the risks they face with the fraudulent termination of employment contracts and departing the country illegally.