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Spotlight on EMEA Series: Ireland

Spotlight on EMEA

In our Spotlight on EMEA series we roundup the latest developments across the EMEA region.  In this post we focus on the comprehensive changes to the Employment Permits System in Ireland which takes effect from 1 January 2024.



Comprehensive changes to the Employment Permits System take effect from 1 January 2024 after the Department of Enterprise Trade and Employment in Ireland announced an expansion of the system, with 43 roles becoming eligible for employment permits.  There is also a focus on a roadmap for increasing minimum salary thresholds across the system.

As a guide the main changes include:

  • 11 roles added to the Critical Skills Occupations List.
  • 32 roles made eligible for a General Employment Permit.
  • Salary requirement for majority of General Employment Permit holders will rise to €34,000 in January 2024.
  • Healthcare assistants and home carers, Horticultural workers and meat processor salary requirements will increase to €30,000 in January 2024.
  • Extension of existing quotas for dairy farm assistants, butcher / deboners, meat processors and horticultural workers.
  • A Labour Market Needs Test (LMNT) is required for General Employment Permit applications and will have to reflect the revised thresholds in order to be deemed valid.


What to expect under the roadmap

The changes proposed under the roadmap will gradually mean that General Employment Permit holders will see salary levels increase to 39,000 euros.  In addition there have been extensions to quotas for several occupations that had previously been made eligible for General Employment Permits.  Quota extensions will take effect from 1 January 2024 for the following roles:

  • 1,000 GEPs for meat processing operatives.
  • 350 GEPs for butcher / deboners.
  • 350 GEPs for dairy farm assistants.
  • 1,000 GEPs have been provided for horticultural workers to support the sector until the introduction of the Seasonal Employment Permit.


We will provide further updates as information becomes available.


If you require assistance with immigration matters in Ireland or globally please contact [email protected] or [email protected]


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