Liepāja offers jobs to lure people back to Latvia

A digital platform offering jobs has started in Liepāja, with attracting compatriots living abroad its chief goal. It was initiated in cooperation between the Liepāja Special Economic Zone and the Ar pasaules pieredzi Latvijā association, reports Latvian Radio June 14.

So far, the association, which was set up in January, has managed to find about ten people who've returned to Latvia. It's not a small number, seeing as it has only just started, its co-creator Jānis Kreilis says. Now they have launched in Liepāja.

"We've found about 30 companies, and ten of those have reacted quickly and are found on the platform. We're working to expand the program...There are companies we're working with in Rīga and who esteem the platform highly," said Kreilis. 

The Trelleborg Wheel Systems Liepāja company, for example, says that it has more than doubled its employee numbers within the past year, from 45 to 96. 

While the program is aimed towards compatriots living abroad, people from Latvia can make use of the system as well. "Many return from Rīga, the UK, Germany, and Denmark. We've no problems conducting a job interview on Skype, what matters most to us is that people are ready for change and for work," says Liene Giertmane-Done, the head of Trelleborg Wheel Systems Liepāja.

Your Move Liepāja encourages businesses to post wages, as wages between €700-€1,500 are sufficient for some people to return. 

One problem that people see when planning to return is finding a place to live, says Arnis Irbens, who returned to Latvia so that his children could go to school here. He's now the head of the Expedit Baltic metal works company.

"We had to quickly decide where we want to stay. It was the summer - the tourism season. We had to make use of what was there on offer. We rented at first, but when we realized we're here to stay we bought our own home," he said. 

Your Move's managers are people who've returned to Latvia after staying abroad, and they say businesses are at this time very interested in these platforms, and part of them are able to provide competitive wages. Currently they say that, for every two Latvians leaving to work abroad, one chooses to return. 

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