Record high number of foreigners covered by Polish social insurance

Marcin Bielecki/PAP

The number of foreigners registered with the Social Insurance Institution (ZUS) stood at 689,000 at the end of September, representing a 31-percent growth on August, ZUS President Prof. Gertruda Uscinska has said, adding that the figure is a ZUS record.

ZUS said in a press release that the number of foreigners registered at end-September was 19,000 higher than in February of this year, adding that it was extremely important because the coronavirus epidemic had had an influence on the number of foreigners in Poland. Since March, the number of foreigners insured through ZUS fell by 10 percent but then started to rise with the re-opening of Poland's borders in June.

"Analysing the latest data, we see that the situation has stabilised. In September, we surpassed the level from February," Uscinska said, as quoted in the press release. "We have already made up the losses, which is positive news in the context of the social security system and the labour market."

Uscinska added that the latest data showed that the nationalities most frequently signing up for ZUS payments were Ukrainians (507,000), Belarusians (46,200) and Georgians (11,100).

The ZUS president said that among the foreigners coming forward in September for retirement and disability insurance, 409,000 were workers and 21,500 were self-employed. The remainder were employed on other forms of contract, such as fixed-term.

Long-term analysis shows that the 16-year trend reveals a steady increase in foreigners legally residing and working in Poland, with 75 percent of them currently Ukrainians.