Brazil Looks to ‘Repatriate’ Overseas Workers

While Brazil has made effort to entice highly-skilled foreign workers to the country, it has a natural interest in keeping well-paid professional jobs for Brazilians.

IT consultant Leonardo Bittencourt

IT consultant Leonardo Bittencourt is part of a growing number of Brazilian workers who want to head abroad to gain experience, but then bring that experience back to Brazil.

And with the work visa process already overloaded, a new program to bring Brazilian nationals working abroad back home has gained momentum, according to a recent O Globo report.

Among the main target candidates are the many skilled Brazilian candidates currently are un- or underemployed in other countries, affected by the global economic crisis or other immigration issues.

However, many of these Brazilians are calling for improvements in wages, social services and tax rates before making the move.

It is estimated some three million Brazilians currently work abroad, although this is difficult to calculate and even harder to verify, as some work on an unofficial basis and have outstayed their visas.

A special cross-ministry commission is to be created this month to discuss with proposals. According to the President of the National Immigration Council (CNIg), Paulo Sérgio de Almeida, businesses will reap the benefits of contracting Brazilians, a far simpler process than hiring foreign nationals.

Graduates and other highly-skilled workers affected by the global crisis should be prime candidates for “repatriation,” particularly those from industries currently in such high demand in Brazil: infrastructure, logistics, oil and gas, and technology.

The lack of skilled labour in Brazil is recognized as one of the contributing factors to the so-called “Brazil cost,” which discourages greater investment in the country from overseas. Its repercussions have been felt with the array of multi-billion-dollar infrastructure projects planned and underway in Brazil in the run-up to the World Cup and Olympics.

Read the full article on The Rio Times website.

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