Due to the lack of labor force, businessmen in North Macedonia demand that the quotas be increased, as well as the procedures for securing workers from abroad be simplified.

According to them, recently it happens that not even one interested person appears in job advertisements.

"Nobody shows up for the competition, they don't even ask what the salary is.

Simply, there is no one interested, maybe for the young people the work in North Macedonia no longer seems interesting", Vlladanka Trajanovska, president of the Employers' Organization, who at the same time runs a company that deals with the production, tells Radio Free Europe. of transformers and other electronic equipment.

She emphasizes that the lack of manpower in many sectors is already evident.

"The most obvious lack of workers is in the construction sector, workers qualified as mechanical technicians.

Recently, there is also a lack of accountants.

The business sector faces a serious shortage of qualified workers", says Trajkoska.

Data from the last population census in North Macedonia show that there are 109,249 unemployed people aged 15 and over in the country.

Almost 80% of them have primary and secondary education.

Most of the unemployed with secondary education, more than 14,000 or 26% live in the Skopje region, over 9,000 or 17% in the Pollog region and over 7,000 or 14% in the Northeast region.

From the League of Economic Chambers, they emphasize that young people in North Macedonia have much greater expectations than companies can offer them at the beginning in accordance with the productivity of their professional engagement.

But young people say that low wages, lack of security and bad working conditions force them to leave the country rather than join the labor market.

"Our education system does not produce staff who have the skills required in the labor market", says Luka Pavicević, underlining that essential reforms in education are needed so that young people can be trained for work during schooling.

In the absence of a local framework, the demand for the import of labor force from abroad increases more and more.

From the beginning of the year until now, more than 2,000 requests have been made to the Employment Agency by foreign citizens to obtain a work permit in North Macedonia, 1,718 of which have already been provided with this permit.

The Minister of Economy of North Macedonia, Kreshnik Bekteshi, told the media at the beginning of July that only in the first six months of this year, more than 70 percent of the quotas reserved for foreign workers were filled.

However, Trajanovska says that the number of imported workers in North Macedonia is very high as the companies, the foreign workers who are mainly engaged in the construction sector, bring them through the companies they cooperate with, as the procedures for obtaining work permits are very complicated.

"As soon as possible, the Law that enables the employment of foreign citizens should be corrected, to simplify the procedure for their engagement by the companies that need it", she says.

The Employment Agency of North Macedonia informs that 4,700 foreign citizens, mainly from Turkey and neighboring countries such as Albania, Kosovo and Serbia, were provided with work permits last year.

Of them, 799 are company managers, 300 unskilled workers, 268 welders, 93 managers, 78 football players, as well as other profiles.

The director of the Employment Agency, Bekim Murati, says that the largest number of foreign citizens who receive residence permits are foreigners who decide to open a company in North Macedonia.

"It is about companies of different profiles, starting from the Information Technology sector, business managers and many other fields", says Bekim Murati, director of the Employment Agency.

But from the Organization of Employers they say that they are surprised by the fact that although local companies cannot provide labor force, the largest number of foreigners in North Macedonia with work permits are those who run new companies in the country.

"It clearly seems that they open companies to take advantage of certain benefits that are offered to them in the countries", says Vlladana Trajanovska.

The business sector raises the alarm that it is high time to draw up a functional strategy to activate the country's workforce and stop the surge of migration, otherwise many businesses will be forced to close their operations or provide workers from distant countries. birth./REL/