Work permit still required for Rumanian and Bulgarian employees after 1 January 2009
On 5 December 2008 the Council of Ministers adopted a bill of Royal Decree which extends the transition period for the employment of Bulgarian and Rumanian employees with 3 years until 31 December 2011. The publication of the Royal Decree in the Belgian Official Gazette is to be expected in the coming two weeks.
Bulgaria and Rumania joined the European Union on 1 January 2007. During the transition period they cannot benefit from the free movement of workers within the European Union.
Work permit requirement
This means that employees who have the Bulgarian or Rumanian nationality will still need a work permit after 1 January 2009. For certain jobs with a shortage on the employment market (“knelpuntberoepen”/”professions en difficulté de recrutement”), they can benefit from a simplified procedure.
The Belgian government can still lift the transition measures before the end of 2012 by means of a Royal Decree. This will only be possible once an agreement will be reached regarding the several liability of the main contractor or principal in respect of the compliance with the salary conditions and terms of employment of seconded foreign employees.
For the nationals of the EU countries which joined the European Union on 1 May 2004 (Poland, Hungary, Lithuania, Estonia…) a work permit is in principle still required until 30 April 2009 (with a possible extension until 30 April 2011).
Posted: December 16th, 2008