• Monday, May 20, 2024
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El Salvador offers free passports to 5000 overseas skilled workers

el salvador

Nayib Bukele, the President of El Salvador has announced that the government is offering 5000 free passports to overseas skilled workers, equivalent to $5 billion in the government’s passport program.

Bukele, 42, said that the opportunity is for overseas workers to contribute to the country’s future workforce, assuring full citizenship status and voter privileges for all beneficiaries.

El Salvador is Central American country bordered by Honduras to the north and east, Guatemala to the northwest, and the Pacific Ocean to the south. It is the only Central American country that doesn’t have a Caribbean coastline.

The announcement, made Saturday on the President’s account on X read, “We’re offering 5,000 free passports (equivalent to $5 billion in our passport program) to highly skilled scientists, engineers, doctors, artists, and philosophers from abroad.

“This represents less than 0.1% of our population, so granting them full citizen status, including voting rights, poses no issue.

“Despite the small number, their contributions will have a huge impact on our society and the future of our country.”

Bukele also added that the passport program will facilitate their relocation by removing taxes and tariffs on moving families and assets, including commercial value items like equipment, software, and intellectual property.

El Salvador is home to over 6 million people in Central America. The International Labour Organisation reported in 2021 that the concentration of workers in commerce and services, high rates of underemployment and urban informality, including low educational levels affect women and young people in the main cities of El Salvador and influence their intention to migrate.

In 2020 during the Covid pandemic, about 1.6 million people left the country leaving gaps in the workforce, especially in health and sciences. The government believes this move will help address this problem, promising to reveal more details about the program in time.