Since 2015, Hungary has seen a steady increase in the number of foreign guest workers. For them, the government has made it easier to work in several ways. Some Ukrainian workers left when the war broke out, and Asians are dissatisfied with the depreciation of the forint.
The number of Ukrainians is steadily decreasing, while Asians are dissatisfied every payday because of the deteriorating forint, Telex reports. Although the government sees foreign guest workers as a solution to the labour shortage, experience shows that it is not nearly as easy to attract them to the Hungarian labour market as many had hoped.
Over the past 6-8 years, the government has improved the opportunities for people to work in Hungary, and companies are trying to recruit from a wide variety of countries. Labour shortages in Hungary emerged at the end of the crisis in 2014, which started in 2008. 2015 was the first year when the vacancies were not always filled immediately. Since then, it has become increasingly difficult to find people for these jobs every year. This year, the problem has reappeared, some say more than at any time in recent decades, Telex continues.
According to some studies, there is a shortage of around 100,000 workers in the country. This is the number of people companies are actively looking for. However, a significant number of experts agree that the shortage is not so much in terms of the number of workers, but in terms of the skills and motivation of the workers.
Guest workers will not save Hungary
Most work visas are valid for 1-2 years, so many people go home and are replaced. However, it is telling that very few workers extend their expiring visas. Usually, Hungarian employers do not manage to offer a good enough deal to keep their guest workers for long.
It is not true at all that guest workers will bail out the Hungarian economy overnight. This is because European countries are now competing with each other for every hard-working hand. And in this competition, Hungary is lagging behind in terms of the wages it can offer.