Some 15,000 seasonal workers expected in Huelva in early January

Every year, thousands of Moroccan women travel to the municipality of Huelva, Spain, for the strawberry picking season as part of the circular migration campaign between Morocco and Spain.

This campaign, launched in 2007 with only 5,000 workers, selected according to specific conditions and criteria, has developed over the last few years, gradually increasing the number of arrivals from Morocco to reach more than 12,000 seasonal workers per year, which travel to Spain.

While the health crisis linked to Covid-19 has considerably reduced the number of Moroccan seasonal workers working in the fields of Huelva, this year the town is preparing to welcome up to 15,000 Moroccan agricultural workers in January 2023, i.e. 5,000 more, compared to the 2021 season.

According to the Spanish press, the government sub-delegation in Huelva pointed out that the planned arrivals will take place from the beginning of January to mid-March, and this, in three phases with the arrival, in the first phase, of 10,000 seasonal workers. Moroccans in January, while the remaining 5,000 seasonal workers will arrive during the second phase (second week of March) and the third phase (first week of April).

The sub-delegation also affirmed that entry into the territory is no longer restricted at the borders for public health reasons, and that the arrival of Moroccan seasonal workers is planned ” by order at the port of Tarifa (Cadiz), as a destination point, where they will arrive by ferry and then move to the province of Huelva, reports the Spanish press.

As for the contingents of seasonal workers from Ecuador and Honduras, a total of 800 workers will arrive from these countries from February 2023 to work in the agricultural campaign. This is the second year of recruitment of these Latin American seasonal workers, after the pilot experience of the 2021/2022 campaign, which allowed 457 seasonal workers to come to work in Huelva.

In detail, 250 seasonal workers are expected from Ecuador, while another 550 will come from Honduras, after Spain reached an agreement with this country for the selection of 250 new people.

The Spanish Ministry of Inclusion, Social Security and Migration approves annually, and within the framework of the provisions of Organic Law 4/2000, of January 11, the procedure for the collective management of recruitment at origin. This decree takes into account the national employment situation, the annual forecast of professions and the expected number of jobs that can be covered by this program.

That said, and even if Spain tries to diversify the countries of recruitment for the agricultural season, Morocco remains the country that sends the most workers, thanks to the seriousness observed during these last 15 years of collaboration within the framework of the circular migration campaign.

MoroccoLatestNews UK has approached the Department of Economic Inclusion, Small Business, Jobs and Skills, which is managing this campaign, for further clarification on the 2022 season, and is still awaiting the return from the department of Younes Sekkouri.

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