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Government to Invite Employer Submissions on Skills Shortages

To ensure that the employment permit system is responsive to changes in economic circumstances and labour market conditions, the system is managed through the operation of two occupations lists. These are:

  1. The Critical Skills List, for in-demand roles, and
  2. The Ineligible Occupations List, for jobs which are easily filled by EEA nationals

The system undergoes an evidence-based review by Government twice a year to assess the eligibility of occupations appearing on the Critical Skills List and the Ineligible Occupations List for employment permits. The Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment has opened a register for those wishing to be notified once the public consultation has commenced.


The rationale underpinning the inclusion or omission from the lists of any particular occupation is driven by skills demand in the economy. It is based on research undertaken by the Expert Group on Future Skills Needs and factors considered include:

  • Labour market intelligence
  • Input from relevant government departments
  • Education outputs
  • Sectoral up-skilling and training initiatives, and
  • Any other known contextual factors


Stakeholder submissions are considered a vital source of information for these bi-annual reviews. Industry is urged to engage with the process to ensure that the employment permit system remains flexible and allows the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment to meet skills and labour shortages in real-time.

Once the public consultation commences; submissions are made online using the public consultation submission form. They are considered by the Economic Migration Policy Interdepartmental Group chaired by officials from the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment. The Group is interested in any factors considered appropriate to have an occupation earmarked for adjustment on the lists.

Following the review process, a recommendation is put to the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment.


The submission process is an opportunity for stakeholders to provide information, experiences and different perspectives on the nature and extent of skill and/or labour shortages. Stakeholder submissions are a vital source of information and views, helping inform the Department’s final assessment of the status of occupations.

The latest review of the occupations list is imminent, and registration is now open for those wishing to be notified upon the commencement of the public consultation stage.

For more information on how you can make a submission or for any queries related to employment permits, contact a Business Immigration specialist from our Employment Law & Benefits team.

The content of this article is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute legal or other advice.

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