Access to the labour market


Country Report: Access to the labour market Last updated: 31/05/22


Felicia Nica with support from JRS Romania Visit Website

Asylum seekers have access to the labour market following 3 months from the lodging of the application, if no decision has been taken by IGI-DAI due to no fault of the applicant, or during the appeal stage.[1]This means that if a decision was made in the administrative phase of the procedure, the asylum seeker is allowed access to labour market even sooner than 3 months. Persons who, at the time of filing an application for asylum, have a right of residence on the territory of Romania and are working legally, may continue to work.[2]

Access to the labour market is granted under the same conditions set out by law for Romanian citizens.[3] Accordingly, there is no labour market test, sectoral limitation or other restriction laid down in the law.

The Asylum Decree prescribes that asylum seekers may benefit, upon request, from mediation services, professional information and counselling services provided to persons seeking employment by the County Employment Agencies (AJOFM).[4]

In order to be registered as a job seeker by the AJOFM and to benefit from the aforementioned services, asylum seekers must present the documents requested by law, except for the civil status documents issued by the country of origin, together with their temporary identity document issued by IGI-DAI and a certificate which confirms their right to work. The same conditions apply for asylum seekers’ participation in a vocational training programme or the evaluation of professional competences acquired through non-formal means.

Diplomas or certificates of education or graduation, as well as certificates of professional competence, qualification or other relevant documents, are accepted only if they are recognised on the territory of Romania according to the applicable legal provisions.

According to the law, asylum seekers who have access to the labour market have the right to benefit from measures promoting employment, as well as protection within the unemployment insurance system, under the conditions provided by the law for the Romanian citizens.[5] Moreover, the provisions of the Asylum Decree on access to employment for asylum seekers also refer to the possibility to participate in vocational training programmes.[6]

From the discussions held with the stakeholders, it appears that in 2019,so like in 2018, asylum seekers have not faced obstacles in finding a job, as information about available jobs were provided to them. The jobs advertised by stakeholders were in the unskilled labour sector. As a result, asylum seekers did not encounter problems related to the lack of Romanian language knowledge, diplomas or other documents that would prove their qualifications. The majority of asylum seekers were reportedly unskilled workers in their country of origin.

Bucharest: According to the JRS representative, there are asylum seekers who do not seem to want to work. The director of Stolnicu mentioned that some asylum seekers had been hired at IKEA.

Rădăuţi: There were 1-2 asylum seekers legally employed. They prefer to work on the black market.  If they would like to stay for longer, they will find a job.

Şomcuta Mare: Asylum seekers are considered to not face many obstacles in finding a job as they are informed by IGI-DAI and NGOs about the available jobs in the area. The persons accommodated in the Regional Centre are also periodically informed of available jobs by AIDRom. They usually work in the unskilled sector. In 2021 many were working in a medical protection factory. IGI-DAI received an offer fom this factory and ASSOC and AIDRom shared the openings with the asylum seekers.

Galaţi: it was reported that there were asylum seekers working in the unskilled sector. NGOs are constantly informing asylum seekers about the job advertisements provided monthly by AJOFM.   Labour Inspectorate had also a meeting were the aim of the institution was described to the asylum seekers and how they can contact it when needed.JRS and IGI-DAI organised a meeting with a number of employers, that presented their vacancies.

Timișoara: according to the director of Timișoara Regional Centre no asylum seekers were employed. This was confirmed by the JRS representative reported that many asylum seekers are reluctant to work and they do not stay for 3 months in order to have the right to work.

Giurgiu: the director was not aware of how many asylum seekers were employed in 2021. JRS representative reported that there were asylum seekers hired legally in 2021. As barriers in finding a job she pointed out the language, low wages and also transport.

The number of applicants who were employed as of the end of 2019 was 26.[7] IGI-DAI reported that the number of asylum seekers employed at the end of 2021 was 18.[8] The number of asylum seekers with right to work was also provided – 276 compared to 970 in 2020.[9]




[1] Article 17(1)(o) Asylum Act.

[2] Ibid.

[3] Ibid.

[4] Article 6^1(1)-(5) Asylum Decree.

[5] Article 17(1)(o^1) Asylum Act.

[6] Article 6^1(4) Asylum Decree.

[7] Information provided by IGI-DAI, 20 February 2020.

[8] Information provided by IGI-DAI, 10 March 2022.

[9] Information provided by IGI-DAI, 16 February, 2021.

Table of contents

  • Statistics
  • Overview of the legal framework
  • Overview of the main changes since the first report
  • Asylum Procedure
  • Reception Conditions
  • Detention of Asylum Seekers
  • Content of International Protection
  • ANNEX I – Transposition of the CEAS in national legislation