Connecticut, US

Feb 11 2019

2019 Quota Levels Increased Since 2018


The situation

The Romanian government has announced that 20,000 work authorization spots are available across all foreign worker categories in 2019, an overall increase of 5,000 spots compared to 2018.

A closer look

The quota has not been divided among various categories of workers, as it was in past years. This unification represents the government’s intention to streamline the work authorization process.


  • Pending applications. Qualifying applications submitted before the 2019 quota numbers were released will now be processed.
  • Resubmission of applications. Applications for foreign workers which were submitted before the quota figures were released must be resubmitted. Fragomen will contact affected foreign nationals to confirm next steps.


  • Romanian quota system. Since 2007, Romania has used nationwide annual quotas to restrict the total number of work authorizations that can be granted. Though the government proposed to abolish the quota system and relax other immigration requirements, the Romanian parliament approved a new law in November 2018 that still contained quota requirements.
  • Quota exhaustion in 2018. Work authorization quota numbers significantly increased in 2018 to meet the need for more foreign workers, but the quota was still exhausted for seconded workers by early July of that year. The government responded by releasing 8,000 additional quota spots for permanent and seconded workers in August 2018.
  • Other countries’ quota systems. Many other countries use quota systems to control the number of foreign workers, such as Estonia, Switzerland, Kazakhstan, the United Kingdom and Nigeria.

Looking ahead

The new quota, up again since last August’s increase, reflects economic development in Romania and the government’s efforts to ensure that employers are able to obtain an adequate workforce by hiring foreign workers for positions that cannot be filled by local workers.

Fragomen expects Romania to continue reviewing its immigration system as work authorization application volumes increase across various categories, which is expected to add pressure to the current immigration infrastructure. Fragomen will report on relevant developments.

This alert is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions, please contact the global immigration professional with whom you work at Fragomen or send an email to