Cesmad: Bill on Employees from Outside EU Not Bold Enough

(Stock photo by TASR)

Bratislava, August 11 (TASR) – A bill sponsored by the Interior and Labour, Social Affairs and the Family Ministries aimed at facilitating the employment of people from outside the EU will bring only minimum improvements, if any, Road Haulier Association Cesmad Slovakia stated on Thursday.

Cesmad believes that prepared changes concerning mainly transfers of employees within the same company and seasonal work will hardly be able to tackle the lack of a skilled workforce faced by many Slovak companies. For example, there’s a lack of 1,200 professional lorry and bus drivers in Slovakia, and Cesmad believes that drivers from non-EU countries could help to resolve the problem.

One big obstacle in hiring drivers from outside the EU is the complicated bureaucratic processes, which take as long as four-six months. “This is too long a time for entrepreneurs who are striving to survive in the difficult transport business. Compared to Poland, where such a process takes between one-two weeks, we can see what a handicap Slovak hauliers have,” said Cesmad general secretary Pavol Reich.

Meanwhile, Labour Minister Jan Richter’s recommendation that road hauliers should look for drivers primarily at labour offices misses the point, said Reich.

“According to available statistics from labour offices, only 275 job applicants have shown interest in working as professional drivers, but they either lack qualifications or aren’t actually interested in this job,” stated Reich, who added that Cesmad representatives have seen several selection processes in which only 2 percent of the applicants had both the necessary skills and interest in working as professional drivers.