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Czech gov’t to introduce green cards for non-EU foreigners

The Czech government approved the plan for the introduction of green cards for non-EU foreigners of selected professions, the Czech news agency CTK said on Monday.

Labor and Social Affairs Minister Petr Necas told journalists after the cabinet meeting that the cards, providing a stay permit along with labor permit, should be introduced as quickly as possible. The government wants the cards to attract foreigners to fill vacancies in the areas that are short of workforce. The local market lacks skilled manual workers as well as experts with university education, Necas said, adding that professions such as nurses and technical specialists are lacking. He said that some 220,000 foreign workers legally work in the 10 million Czech Republic now. “The Czech Republic also needs foreign workforce from countries outside the EU,” Necas said.

Non-EU citizens need a work permit in the Czech Republic. A total of 75,000 people with such permit worked in the country this September. The government expects the green cards project to simplify the whole system of granting work permit to foreigners. The work and residence permits are to be issued as a single document by Czech embassies within a single procedure. (