Italy sees high demand for non-EU work permits as applications open

The Local Italy
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Italy sees high demand for non-EU work permits as applications open
A worker carries a crate of grapes in a vineyard in the village of Manarola, La Spezia, in September 2013. Photo by OLIVIER MORIN / AFP

As applications for non-EU work permits opened on Saturday, Italy had already received over 600,000 pre-applications – four times the quota available.


The Italian interior ministry said on Friday it had received some 608,000 pre-applications for non-EU work permits between October 30th and November 26th – a figure outstripping the set government quota for 2023 (136,000) by four times.  

The announcement came less than 24 hours before the ministry was due to open online applications for non-seasonal workers under its yearly decreto flussi, a decree governing immigration to the country for employment reasons.

Italy offers a limited number of non-EU work permits on a changing annual quota, with permits being allocated on a first-come-first-served basis after the electronic window for submission opens.

READ ALSO: Italian work permits: Who needs one and how do you get it?

Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni pledged in September to gradually raise the number of annual work visas for non-EU workers after irregular migration to Italy spiked in 2023, resulting in deadly shipwrecks including one off the coast of Calabria in late February.

The move also followed heavy pressure from industry leaders who say more workers are needed in many sectors.


The quota for 2023 was already higher than in recent years, and the number of permits available was set to increase further to 151,000 in 2024 and 165,000 in 2025.

Italy’s interior ministry said that among the pre-applications received so far for next year, around 253,000 were relative to non-seasonal work, some 261,000 were relative to seasonal work, and approximately 86,000 related to jobs in the social and healthcare sectors.


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