On May 9, the Employment Agency started accepting applications from employers who wish to receive financial support in hiring unemployed persons from certain vulnerable groups on the labor market under the Employment Promotion Act (EPA).
As of May 9, 2022, employers can submit documents to the labor offices in the country for the use of preferences for employment and training of the unemployed, which can be:
- young people up to the age of 29 with permanent disabilities or using social or integrated health and social services for residential care, who have completed their education (in accordance with Article 36, paragraph 2);
- unemployed persons who have served a sentence of "imprisonment" (under Article 55 of the Criminal Code).
There are also opportunities to submit requests from employers who open jobs for training through work (dual system of training) for unemployed persons (Article 46a of the Labor Code) or the so-called "green jobs" (Article 55e of the Labor Code), as well as for hiring unemployed persons over 58 years of age under the national program "Retirement Assistance".
According to the National Employment Action Plan in 2022, employers who organize training for unemployed persons to acquire a profession, with the aim of hiring them, can also receive financial support. Funds from the state budget also support the conduct of training on key competencies of employed personnel in micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises at the initiative of the employer.
The funding parameters are defined in the National Employment Action Plan for 2022 and provide for the provision of funds for labor remuneration for a certain period, as well as the corresponding insurance contributions for employed unemployed persons. For unemployed persons enrolled in vocational training, the costs of the training are covered, and the trainees themselves are paid daily stipends and funds for intercity transport. For the training of employed persons, the state covers 50% of the costs of the organized training on key competencies.
In parallel, financial support continues for the unemployed, which aims to support their mobility or entrepreneurship. The unemployed with the attitude of starting their own business can receive their unemployment benefits all at once or be reimbursed up to BGN 4,000 for expenses incurred in connection with starting a business. Start-up entrepreneurs can also receive funds for other additional services such as consulting, training, hiring another unemployed person, etc.
The unemployed can also receive financial support for daily expenses incurred for intercity transport to and from the workplace, as well as funds to cover accommodation and other expenses when starting work in a settlement more than 50 km away from their place of residence.
Each "Labor Bureau" directorate has funds under part of the various programs and measures to promote employment, providing preferences to employers or the unemployed. Current opportunities to apply for them until the planned financial resource is exhausted are announced on the website of the Employment Agency, in the heading "Funding announcements by region" in the subheadings for each region "Incentive measures for the unemployed" and "Incentive programs and measures for employers" .
The free funds are also announced on the information board in every "Labor Bureau" Directorate in the country, including in the city of Ruse. There you can also get complete information about the possibilities, procedures and conditions for granting preferences for the unemployed or employers.