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Belarus to tighten employment rules for foreign companies

Belarus will tighten rules of employment of migrant workers by foreign companies starting 15 July.

According to the Interior Ministry, tighter rules will protect the national labor market. However, experts and representatives of foreign companies are worried that they will not be able to find enough workers among Belarusians.

At present foreign companies that operate in Belarus are not limited in hiring foreigners. The only request is that such employees should be properly registered and have a contract in accordance with Belarusian legislation.

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However, starting 15 July, non-resident companies will be able to employ foreigners to work in Belarus only in two cases: there should be either a relevant decision by the president of Belarus, or they can hire up to 5 people to work in their Belarusian offices.

“On the one hand, these amendments will help protect local workers and combat illegal work migration. On the other hand, they will have an adverse effect on projects carried out with the participation of foreign companies and presupposing hiring labor from abroad”, lawyers explain.

For example, in projects involving general contracting, supervision (for a period exceeding 90 days) and commissioning of the equipment supplied”.

The changes will not affect migrant workers already working for non-resident companies in Belarus.

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After the new regulations come into force, foreign companies in Belarus may resort to one of the following solutions: they may register a legal entity in Belarus, they may ask a Belarusian partner companies to employ foreign specialists they need or hire Belarusians and foreigners who have a residence permit in Belarus.

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