If a citizen of a country outside the European Union, like Ukraine, wants to obtain residence or a work permit in Slovakia, they need to wait for at least three months.
“As a result, the best experts end up in neighbouring countries, like the Czech Republic and Poland, where the process is much shorter,” Martin Hošták of the National Union of Employers told The Slovak Spectator.
This is happening at a time of record low unemployment with an increasing number of employers calling for simplifying the conditions for recruiting workers from non-EU countries due to the lack of qualified workforce on the Slovak labour market.
Though the state has adopted some changes aimed to help firms recruit such workers quicker, observers say it is still not enough since the process remains very long and administratively difficult.
“Economic growth will sooner or later require more flexible rules,” said Martin Krekáč, founding partner of the recruitment company Amrop and chairman of Jenewein Group.
What changed after May 1?
Following the calls of companies to simplify the process of recruiting non-EU citizens, the parliament adopted the law on employment services, which came into force in early May, with the aim of fighting social dumping. It cancelled the condition that firms first had to report a vacant position to the labour market where it was to be published for at least 30 days. However, the share of such workers cannot be higher than 30 percent of the total number of staffers.Government accelerates hiring from abroad Read more
The exception applies only for regions where the jobless rate is below 5 percent, i.e. mostly the districts of Bratislava, Trnava, Trenčín and Nitra Regions, and certain professions that are mentioned on the list published by the Central Office of Labour, Social Affairs and Family (ÚPSVaR).
Employers addressed by The Slovak Spectator welcome the changes. Bratislava-based carmaker Volkswagen Slovakia considers the list helpful.