Latvia shouldn't open labor market carelessly, says PM

Latvia should only seek to attract high-skilled employees at the moment, as the local job market is not yet saturated and local job shortages mean increasing focus should be put on mobility, Latvia's PM Māris Kučinskis told Latvian Radio April 5. 

He said that bringing cheap labor to Latvia is out of the question as full employment has not been reached, and the re-training program is not yet fully operational. Many people, he added, want to re-train for professions for which there is no demand. 

"If we will not have strengthened the matters of language, as a small nation we'll be, on some level, threatened," he said, arguing for a careful, regulated approach to labor shortages. 

"Just because there are no people we can't carelessly open the job market to cheap labor," he said. 

In February Latvia approved a list of 237 professions where there is a shortage of labor force in Latvia and for which highly-skilled specialists from abroad could be attracted.

Arnis Sauka, a professor at the Riga Stockholm School of Economics, earlier argued that opening up Latvia's labor market is all but unavoidable

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