Only 12% of work permits for foreigners are for skilled employment

The Community of Valencia – nor Spain – is a promised country for skilled employment. Only 12% of foreigners who come to the region with a work permit do so for a high-quality job. According to Generalitat’s latest data for 2020, the vast majority will work as housekeepers, cleaners, waiters or shop assistants.

In that year, characterized by the coronavirus pandemic, 9,485 people with work permits came to the Valencian Community from abroad. The figure is lower than 9,962 in 2019, the year before Covid. Therefore, it can be said that this decrease is related to the restrictions on economic activity, especially tourism, which was put into practice to combat the pandemic throughout 2020. However, for Spain as a whole, it turned out to be a significant increase in said statistics, going from 114,841 to 119,639 in 2019. Therefore, the phenomenon is of greater concern to the region of Valencia, which is one of the most exposed to tourist activities. In fact, the province with the worst behavior was also the province most relevant to this sector: Alicante. This intensified more than 300 of the 500 work permits lost in one year of autonomy (from 4,341 to 4,030); Castelló increased them from 748,824 and Valencia reduced them from 4,873 to 4,631.

High level

Among other things, the most important fact of this statistic is that these workers are low-skilled. Specifically, of the 9,485 people who came to the Valencian Community in 2020, only 1,154 did so to occupy senior jobs. Of these, 309 are managers and managers, 326 are technical and scientific and intellectual professionals, 229 are skilled workers in manufacturing industries other than plant and machine operators, 48 ​​are skilled workers in the agriculture, livestock, forestry and fisheries sectors, and 239 are skilled workers. was. construction, excluding the machine operator.

On the other side of the scale, occupations for which foreigners are allowed to work are more related to services. House workers and other cleaning personnel come first with 2,138 people. This is followed by restaurant service workers (1,013), agriculture, forestry and fishery workers (859), shop assistants and the like (839).

All four occupations rank first in Spain as a whole, though not in the same order: domestic worker (35,799), farm worker (14,209), waiter (9,413) and clerk (7,193).


Authorizations granted in the Community of Valencia in 2020 represent 7.9% of all authorizations in Spain, almost one point less than in 2019. However, it is important that this rate rises to 13.8% for managers and executives. It is higher in restaurant workers (10.8%) and commercial workers (11.7%). On the other hand, skilled workers in the manufacturing industry are below (7%).

By major sectors of activity, 6,158 of the 9,485 permits granted to autonomous foreigners corresponded to services (almost two-thirds), while 310 remained agriculture, 293 construction and 205 industry. The remaining 648 belong to the unclassifiable. activities. Of the total, only 413 came to work on their own.

Source: Informacion


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