April 1, 2023

Labor shortages in the Flemish region of northern Belgium in 2019 opened up the possibility for companies to attract workers from outside the European Union, providing them with work contracts for every vacant position in the positions they need, mainly related to construction work, plumbing. , driving and cleaning.

However, this section has since been used to trade these contracts and use them in illegal immigration transactions, according to what was found in investigations launched by the Belgian authorities in cooperation with their embassies and consulates in countries destined for the importation of labor, including Morocco. .

In this context, the Belgian newspaper The Standard reported that a group of consulates informed the federal government of possible fraud last summer in hundreds of immigration files with this type of contract from Turkey and Morocco.

A report obtained by the Immigration Service and the Flemish Ministry of Labor from the Belgian consulate in Rabat last October confirmed that it had banned 80 suspicious files, prompting the Belgian authorities to investigate companies interested in requesting these “alleged workers”. from Morocco.

According to the same newspaper, many people enter into employment contracts through companies and agencies specializing in employment, with the aim of selling them to those who wish to immigrate to Belgium from various countries outside the European Union, such as Morocco, especially since these contracts allow beneficiaries to later bring your families.

The same platform confirmed that after several investigations, it was proven that the companies involved initially had no vacancies, indicating that the company in the city of Antwerp requested ten drivers through the same system, while only one was available in its system delivery vehicle. fleet.

In this regard, the Flanders Ministry of Housing has launched an investigation to monitor the beneficiaries of social housing or so-called “social” housing, which is rented out subsidized by the federal government without meeting conditions, including that they do not own more than a specific amount in their bank account or in real estate, especially outside the country for immigrants and communities in other countries.

These investigations have led, according to the same newspaper, to the discovery of 322 tenants who have owned property abroad over the past two years, out of 677 suspects, most of whom belong to three countries: Morocco 295, Turkey 243 and Italy 68. .

The Flemish Minister of Housing Matthias Debinelli has therefore decided to extend by one year the contracts of the agencies with which his ministry has contracts to search for the property of social housing tenants abroad, after the expiration of these contracts on 14 March. identify more such scams.

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