What are the requirements for hiring foreign nationals in Romania, and how complicated are the procedures in this matter? What are the applicable conditions by Romanian law to obtain a work permit for a foreign citizen? Answers to these questions and many more have been prepared in the article below by our collaborators, experts in the field of immigration.
As a general rule, any foreigner having citizenship of a country from outside the European Union can work in Romania only if he strictly meets the conditions imposed by the Romanian immigration law. It is required for that person, together with the future employer, to go through certain procedural steps in order to obtain the necessary work permit and the right of legal residence in Romania.
We will further describe the applicable rules and the procedure for hiring foreign nationals in Romania, and what the immigration process involves exactly.
General criteria for hiring foreign nationals (from outside the European Union)
Any Romanian employer (be it legal person or individual) who plans to hire a foreign national from a country that is not part of the European Union is obliged to ensure that a series of conditions established by law are met. Here are most important of them:
In specific situations, some of the conditions described above do not apply. Here are a few examples of such situations:
- When the foreigner is a professional sportsman and presents documents attesting that he carried out the same activity in another country;
- The foreign national holds a position of director in a company with foreign shareholders, and there is no other person hired on such position in that company;
- The foreigner opts for employment as a seasonal or cross-border worker (please refer to details provided below on these two types of work permits).
What are the conditions the employer must meet for obtaining the work permit?
For hiring foreign nationals in Romania, employers are obliged to go through the procedure for obtaining a work permit for Romania. The work permit grants a foreign national the right to carry out employment activity on Romania’s territory. The permit can be applied for by any employer operating in Romania, and must be issued by the Romanian General Inspectorate for Immigration. The application for the work permit cannot be initiated solely by the foreign individual.
The application file must be submitted to the territorial office of the General Inspectorate for Immigration in the county (region) where the employer has its headquarters registered.
As part of this procedure, all employers are required to meet certain essential conditions for receiving the approval for hiring foreign nationals in Romania. Here are these conditions briefly described:
Depending on the type of employment activity that the foreigner will carry out, as well as the contractual structure based on which he will carry out activity, the employer has at hand several categories of Romanian work permits, such as:
Documents required to obtain the work permit for hiring foreign nationals
In order to hire a foreign citizen, a Romanian employer must submit a work permit application accompanied by a set of documents to the General Inspectorate for Immigration. Here are the documents required for most of the categories of work permits described above, and that must be included in the application file:
- Standard application form;
- Certificate of registration of the company, issued by the Trade Register – original and copy;
- Certificate issued by the tax authorities (ANAF) stating that all tax obligations to the state have been fulfilled by the employer;
- Certificate stating that the employing company is not on the verge of bankruptcy;
- Job description for the vacancy, and proof that the job ad has been published in a newspaper (except for highly qualified or posted workers, for which this obligation does not apply);
- Certificate issued by the Unemployment Agency (ANOFM) from the county where the employing company is located. The certificate must certify that no candidate matching the job requirements for that position has been found in the Unemployment Agency’s database;
- The employment offer letter issued by the company;
- Copy of the minutes drawn up after the selection of the candidates for the vacancies has been completed;
- CV of the foreigner to be hired, and his written statement saying that he is medically fit for the position and that he has a minimum knowledge of the Romanian language;
- Criminal record issued by the competent authorities in the foreigner’s country of origin or residence;
- Criminal record of the employing company;
- Copies of documents showing the experience or professional training of the foreigner, translated and legalized (if the case);
- Copy of passport or travel document, as appropriate;
- Two photos of the foreign citizen, type ¾.
Conditions for obtaining a temporary residence right (residence permit) for employment
A foreign national can obtain the right of temporary residence in Romania for work purposes only if he meets certain conditions expressly provided by law. This right of temporary residence is granted on the basis of a residence permit issued by the General Inspectorate for Immigration.
The residency permit employment purposes can be obtained or extended only if the foreigner (still) meets the conditions for employment in Romania. Also, the individual employment contract (if applicable) must be valid and registered in the Electronic Register of Employees (Revisal). In addition, it must follow from this contract that the foreigner earns an income at least equal to the Romanian national minimum wage. For highly skilled workers, the contractual salary must be equal to at least two national average gross wages per economy.
For more details on the Romanian minimum and average gross wages, you can also check our article: Romanian residency permit for secondment expires soon? Check the extension solutions.
The residency permit for regular employment can be obtained only for a period equal to the validity period of the employment contract, but in no case for more than one year.
On the other hand, foreigners who are highly skilled workers can be granted a residency permit for a period equal to the period for which the employment contract is valid, plus 3 months, but in no case for more than 2 years.
Seasonal workers also have the possibility to extend their residency permit for work purposes. They can only do this for the same period as the validity of the employment contract, plus additional 5 days. It should be noted that a seasonal worker must not exceed the maximum length of stay of 180 days in Romania, during any period of 365 days.
What are the main wins for a Romanian employer hiring foreign nationals?
Due to the fact that in recent years many Romanians have emigrated to other countries in the European Union, employers in Romania are increasingly facing a major problem in terms of labor availability in Romania. In addition, the deficit of the local labor force is determined not only by the migration of a large number of Romanians, but also by the phenomenon of gradual aging of the population.
Thus, finding well-qualified Romanians in certain fields gets increasingly difficult, this being in fact the main reason why employers frequently decide on hiring foreign citizens.
Therefore, employers in the Romanian economy are turning to foreign labor, especially from Asian countries. The decision is certainly a very good one for the development of the local economy. Thus, on foreign markets employers can find the qualified staff they need, and moreover, they can sometimes do so at lower wage costs. The advantages are certainly in the interest of employers, who can build much more productive teams to help them in the successful development of the business.
Why is Romania attractive for non-EU citizens?
Our country is becoming more and more attractive for workers from outside the European Union, and this is because there are better paid jobs here than in the countries where they come from. So, since there is a need to fill vacancies in several sectors of the economy, it is understandable that the labor market in our country has also become attractive to many foreign workers looking for a better paid job than in their country.
Moreover, living conditions are also better than in most Asian countries, which pushes Romania on the list of favorite countries in Europe for emigrants.
In addition, being a member state of the European Union, Romania can also be a good gateway for emigration to Western European countries, where many foreign emigrants actually want to get.