18th December 2018

by Christian Bogaru, Managing Partner



                                      The regime of the foreign workers in Romania 


Giving the evolution of the Central and East European economies in the latest years, particularly the important economic growth that has been registered by the EU countries from this region, fundamental changes regarding the labor force market are expected to happen. A serious labor force crisis is emerging, mainly because of the increase in number of the newly created jobs, doubled by a massive emigration of the local workers to the Western countries of the EU and a general decline of demographics all across the region.

In order to find sufficient labor force, the companies based in these countries, including Romania, need to find foreign workers that are able to take these jobs and are determined to move abroad.

The number of foreign workers that are legally allowed to enter the local labor market is not unlimited, the Government being entitled to determine the number of permanent non-EU workers that can be hired in Romania.

The Romanian legislation distinguishes between seven different categories of employment in the case of the foreign workers, as follows: permanent worker, trainee worker, seasonal worker, cross-border worker, highly qualified worker, posted worker, ICT worker.

Because of the workforce deficit in many sectors, the Romanian Government recently decided to increase the number of foreign workers that can be hired by local companies in 2018, to 15,000, of which 8,000 permanent workers and 5,200 posted workers. Considering the EU citizens that intend to work in Romania, the company that hires them must register their Romanian residence with the territorial units of the General Inspectorate for Immigration (IGI) in the county where the person lives. This procedure allows the EU worker to obtain a Romanian identification code (CNP) and to be registered with the Romanian social security and public health system. The EU citizens do not need to obtain a special work authorization.

Regarding the employment of non-EU foreigners, in order to carry out an activity in Romania, they need a special work authorization. The work authorization may be granted at the employer’s request, by the Romanian Office for Immigration. This is needed for obtaining the long-term stay visa for employment or of the stay permit for work purposes.

The general requirements that a company must fulfill to legally hire a non-EU worker in Romania and to obtain a work permit for the employee, according to the provisions of the Government Ordinance no. 25/2014, are the following:

  • the employer carries on the Romanian territory economic activities that are compatible with the job for which the request of the employment is made
  • the employer has paid the obligations to the state budget for the last quarter prior to the submission of the request
  • the employer has not been convicted of a Labor Code offence or a Criminal Code offence
  • the employer has not been sanctioned in the last 6 months for illegal employment or undeclared work
  • the annual quota for newly admitted workers on the labor market has not been exhausted
  • the foreign worker that is going to be hired has legally entered the country

In addition to the general rules, specific rules are applicable for each category of employment.

After obtaining the work permit, the employer should send the work permit to its new employee of foreign origin, so that he/she can obtain the long stay visa for employment from the diplomatic missions and consular offices of Romania.

To obtain a first single permit or the EU Blue Card for employment the employee must submit a series of documents: an application form, the passport in original and duplicate, the proof of legal ownership of the living space in original and duplicate, the individual employment contract, a salary statement, a print screen from the register of the employees, at the section containing the data about the individual employment contract signed by the employer and a medical certificate.

According to the public data offered by the General Inspectorate for Immigration, by the end of July 2018 a number of 4.395 work authorizations for permanent or posted workers were issued, most of them for workers coming from Vietnam (1.520), Turkey (568), Nepal (358), Serbia (275), Sri Lanka (261), China (253) and The Republic of Moldova (181).

If you need specialized juridical advice on this matter, including more detailed information regarding the procedures briefly presented in this article do not hesitate to contact us.