Call for submissions to the review of Minimum Annual Remuneration (MAR) Thresholds for the Irish Employment Permit System

Economic Migration Policy Unit is conducting a review of the Employment Permit Minimum Annual Remuneration thresholds focusing on the Critical Skills Employment Permit, General Employment Permit, Intra Company Transfer Employment Permit and Contract for Services Employment Permit.

Submissions will only be accepted using the submission form attached below.

Key dates

Submissions open:      Thursday 12th January 2017
Closing date:                Friday 27th January 2017

Enquiries and submission

All enquiries and submissions should be directed to


The Minimum Annual Remuneration (MAR) thresholds were introduced in 2006 and were set and remain in line with the average industrial wage of that year €29,910 and multiples thereof. In the ancillary or non-economic employment permit types, the National Minimum Wage applies. The Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation is currently conducting a review of the Employment Permit MAR thresholds focusing on those Employment Permit types mentioned above. All Employment Permit MAR thresholds can be found in each Employment Permit Type on the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation website, at the link below:

All Employment Permit Types

Objectives of the review

The employment permits regime is designed to facilitate the entry of appropriately skilled non-EEA migrants to fill skills shortages. However, this objective must be balanced by the need to ensure that there are no suitably qualified Irish/EEA nationals available to undertake the work and that the shortage is a genuine one.

Therefore the current and future review and setting of the minimum remuneration level thresholds for an employment permit is a delicate balancing act. The goal is that, so far as possible, economic migration serves the skills need of the economy without disruptively depressing or inflating wage levels in the wider labour market.

Submission process

In order to consider the relevance and appropriateness of the Minimum Annual Remuneration (MAR) Thresholds for the Irish Employment Permit System a review process is being conducted. As part of this review process, the Economic Migration Policy Unit is currently seeking submissions from representative bodies, Government Departments, Agencies, Employers, Employees and other interested parties relating to the Employment Permit MAR Thresholds.

The submission process is an opportunity for stakeholders to provide additional information and potentially different perspectives on the nature and extent of the impact of the MAR Thresholds on their use of the Employment Permit System. Stakeholder submissions are a vital source of information.

As stakeholders of the Employment Permit System, you are invited, either through your industry representative or directly, to make a submission on the attached form and return it to with your observations. A closing date for submissions of Friday 27th January 2017 will be strictly applied. Submissions received by close of business on this date will be considered as part of the review process.

The information you provide is important to our assessment process. You are encouraged to be as specific and detailed as possible when providing information.  For example you may have more up-to-date evidence or other data e.g. industry surveys or reports. We are also interested in any other factors that you consider are appropriate to the setting of the Employment Permit MAR Thresholds and their review.

Please note that the information provided in the submission form will be shared with relevant Government Departments and State organisations. This is to promote an integrated approach to addressing skills shortages in the State.

Economic Migration Policy Unit will consider all submissions received within the stated timeframe. The Unit will also undertake any necessary follow up with submitters and consultation with Government Departments/State Bodies and industry groups. At the end of the consultation process the Department will make recommendations to the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation. Amendments to the Employment Permit MAR Thresholds approved by the Minister will then be given legal effect by way of a statutory instrument.

Additional information

An elaboration of the policy underpinnings of the employment permits system is set out at Employment Permit Policy.

Parties considering making submissions to the review process should be aware that a range of criteria in addition to the adherence to the MAR Thresholds apply to the grant of employment permits.  The criteria vary according to the type of employment permit application which is submitted.  By way of example, the criteria for grant of a Critical Skills Employment Permit are set out at Critical Skills Employment Permit.

Information on the criteria for other types of employment permit can be found by accessing the link relating to each type, available at Employment Permits.

Published by Labour Affairs

Topics: Employment Permits

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