Between now and the end of the year, Italy’s borders will remain closed to new foreign workers, Mr. Natale Forlani, Director General of Immigrations Department at the Ministry of Labour has said.
Of late there have been rumours going round that there would be a new measure to regularize irregular immigrants in the country. There has also been a rumour that the Government was preparing a new Quota Agreement (Decreto flussi) which is a document the Government normally publishes establishing the number of foreigners who can come to Italy for work.
Mr. Forlani has now made it clear that there will be no regularization of irregular immigrants. He also ruled out the publication of a new Quota Agreement.
According to the Government estimates, about 280,000 immigrant workers have lost their jobs due to the financial crisis.
Mr. Forlani said that before thinking of allowing new immigrant workers into the country, special attention must be given to helping those already here who are jobless to find jobs, otherwise they risk becoming irregular immigrants.
Mr. Forlani hinted that should they decide to allow new foreign workers, the number will be limited and they’ll be specific categories of workers such as those trained in their home countries or seasonal workers.
He made it clear that the number of new foreign workers will be much lower than that allowed into the country in the past years.
Meanwhile Mr. Piero Soldini of the CGIL Trade Union and Ms. Liliana Ocmin, of the Cisl Trade Union have renewed calls for regularization of irregular immigrants with jobs.
But judging from Mr. Forlani’s remarks, it appears that at the moment the Government doesn’t seem to be ready to accept such a proposal.
By Elvio Pasca