Without a wider opening of the labor market to foreigners, it will be difficult to maintain the rapid economic growth, assesses the expert of the Polish Confederation Lewiatan, Monika Fedorczuk. Proposes changes that would make it easier for companies to employ foreigners, including improving the issue of work permits by voivodeship offices.
As emphasized by Fedorczuk, enterprises feel the shortage of employees more and more strongly, especially in the ICT, trade, production, and construction industries.
"As a result of demographic processes (natural and migration), labor resources are shrinking. In 2000, the number of people of working age was 25.3 million, while 20 years later it was 23.8 million people, which is approx. 1.5 million less. Companies need employees, both in specialist and managerial positions, as well as for simple jobs," the expert said.
She emphasized that without supplementing the staff shortages, enterprises would lose the possibility of executing fixed-term contracts or fulfilling concluded contracts. Therefore, in her opinion, there is an urgent need to open up more to workers from third countries.
The Lewiatan Confederation proposes, among others amendment of the provisions of the Employment Promotion Act aimed at extending the statements on entrusting a foreigner with work by the employer from the current 6 months during the next 12 months to 18/24 within the following 24/36 months. The organization believes that, at a later stage, a mechanism should be introduced which, depending on the national security situation and the needs of the labor market, will allow for extending the list of countries whose citizens may use the declaration procedure.
Meanwhile, the Central Statistical Office reported that the value of goods and services purchased by foreigners in Poland decreased in the first half of the year by 22.5 percent y/y. In terms of value, it amounted to PLN 9.3 billion.
However, in the second quarter alone, foreigners' expenses in Poland amounted to PLN 5.3 billion, i.e. by 62.0 percent more than a year ago.