Tourism Minister Dr. Ilin Dimitrov and Deputy Prime Minister Lazar Lazarov Outlined Measures to Overcome the Shortage of Personnel in Tourism

10 May 2023

Minister of Tourism Ilin Dimitrov and Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Labour and Social Policy Lazar Lazarov held a meeting to discuss measures to overcome the shortage of staff in the tourism sector before the start of the active summer season. They praised the coordination and cooperation between the two ministries and identified measures for its development in the future.

Deputy Minister of Tourism Irena Georgieva and the Executive Directors of the Employment Agency Polina Marinova and the General Labour Inspectorate Ekaterina Asenova participated in the discussion.

Actions have already been taken to increase the teams of the Employment Agency and the Migration Directorate of the Ministry of Interior, engaged in processing employers' applications for access to the Bulgarian labour market of non-EU workers, which will lead to faster issuance of the relevant permits. Organizational measures are also envisaged to improve coordination and streamline the procedure for the exchange of documents between the responsible institutions, which will facilitate and speed up the recruitment of staff for seasonal employment in the tourism sector.

Minister Ilin Dimitrov expressed his satisfaction with the undertaken legislative changes, which enable hotel owners to relocate their employees to their own establishment in a summer resort after the end of the winter season. ‘This measure will greatly facilitate business because employers will thus be able to rely on well-trained and highly qualified staff. We have reached a stage of development where we should talk not only about the number of tourists, but also about the quality of the product we offer and here the staff is of great importance,’ Minister Ilin Dimitrov emphasized. He added that efforts are underway to expand cooperation between the Ministry of Tourism and vocational tourism schools to organize school competitions in all 28 regional cities in order to give young people in the sector a platform to showcase their skills and encourage contacts with employers.

Minister Lazarov presented the conditions and benefits for the employment of foreign workers, regulated in the agreements on the regulation of labour migration, which Bulgaria has signed with Georgia, Moldova and Armenia. He stressed that the Ministry of Labour and Social Policy will continue to work to identify other countries for cooperation in this area. A simplified procedure for employers to submit documents when applying to employ a larger number of foreign workers is also being considered.

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