There was a nearly 25 percent decrease in the number of work permits issued in 2018 compared to the previous year, the Department of Statistics has revealed.
A total of 10,225 work permits were issued in 2018; when compared to the 13,578 work permits issued in 2017, it represents a 24.69 percentage decrease.
The report was compiled from data collected from the Department of Immigration.
The majority of work permits – 54 percent – were issued for workers in the elementary occupational group, of which 67 percent were Haitian nationals.
“Professionals, science and engineering professionals were granted 1,078 or 11 percent of the total permits issued. Twenty-four percent of this group were Americans. This was followed by craft and related workers with 957 or 9 percent of the total work permits. Thirty-one percent of this group were from the Philippines. The least amount of work permits granted (10 or 0.1 percent) was in the skilled agricultural, forestry and fishery workers group,” the report states.
The largest segment of work permits were issued for workers for households, followed by the hotel industry and then the construction sector.
Broken down by nationality, 3,816 work permits were issued to Haitians, 1,206 were issued to Filipinos and 1,187 were issued to Jamaicans.
In 2018 the government increased work permit fees for various scaled occupations, however the elementary occupation scale remained the same.