Romania’s economy will face a shortage of more than half a million workers by 2023 if it fails to revise its policies, the Concordia Employers Confederation said.

half million workers to fill labour

The labour shortage is estimated at about 300,000 people this year and is forecasted to increase to 549,000 people in 2023, the Confederation said, quoting a study by global consultancy KPMG  and the National Institute of Economic Research (INCE).

In the IT sector, the gap between supply and demand of workforce is estimated to reach over 20,000 by 2021, although the sector has been declared to be of priority importance for the economy, the study showed.

The demographic decline and migration are among the main causes that have led to an aggravation of the problem, as the number of retirees is rapidly approaching that of active workers.

The study also showed that the number of vacancies has doubled in the period 2013-2018, the unemployment rate reaching a historical low of 4.2% in May 2018. Starting 2012, the number of jobs created has been exceeding the number of jobs that were disbanded.

“We need this radiography of the labour market so that we, the business community, together with trade unions and authorities, can identify the set of measures needed to mitigate labour shortages,” Concordia president Steven van Groningen said. “If we do not act now, in the context of increasingly worrying economic prospects, within a not too distant horizon, the sustainable development of the economy will be deeply affected.”

According to the study, the authorities need to carry out a thorough analysis of the causes of the labour force crisis and come up with a framework to strengthen cooperation between the educational environment and the labour market and to modernise vocational and technical education.

The study also draws attention to the need to implement a strategy to stop the demographic decline.

Concordia Employer Confederation was established in 2007 and brings together the most powerful sectoral federations in the Romanian economy, including seven of the top ten companies by number of employees and turnover.

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