Significant decrease in the number of ICT work permits given to foreign workers

August 04, 2023
Significant decrease in the number of ICT work permits given to foreign workers There has been a substantial drop in the number of employment permits issued to foreign workers in the first six months of 2023 with the most dramatic fall in the information, communications and technology (ICT) sector. On a like-for-like basis, there has been a 25 per cent drop in the number of permits issued between January and June this year, compared with the first six months last year. A total of 15,338 permits were issued until June 30th in 2023 compared with 20,160 in the same period last year. In the ICT sector, the figure for permits issued in the first half of the year was 5,333. This represented a massive 50 per cent drop compared with the same period in 2022, when 10,832 permits were issued. The reduction reflects the contraction of the ICT sector in Ireland over the past year. In the past week, Accenture, which supplies consultancy services to the technology industry, announced it intends to implement a further 900 redundancies in its Irish operations. There were reductions too in the number of permits issued in the construction, finance, insurance and agricultural sectors, although they were relatively small compared with that for ICT. The only sector that has bucked the trend is health: some 5,128 permits have been issued in 2023, which represents an increase of about 5 per cent over 2022. However, the figures indicate that 2022 was something of an outlier as they were partly attributable to a post-Covid bounce. “The surge in 2002 was heavily tech-related,” said Danny McCoy, chief executive of the business representative group Ibec. “Processing delays were also overcome compared to 2021 when Covid was a factor,” he added. He said the fall in numbers was consistent with the tech sector overestimating the ecommerce “new normal” during Covid. India remains the country to which most work permits are issued, with 15,650 in 2022 and a further 6,868 to date in 2023. Many of those permits were issued to people working in the technology sector. More than 1,000 permits have been issued to workers from each of Brazil, the Philippines and Pakistan so far this year, with almost 900 to Chinese workers. South Africa, Nigeria and Zimbabwe have also been issued with more than 500 permits, as has North Macedonia. More than 900 applications for work permits were refused. The highest numbers of refusals were in relation to workers from India and Brazil.

You May Like