(ANSA) - BELGRADE, 06 DIC - Romanian companies will be able to hire with a permanent labour contract up to 13.500 foreign workers from outside the EU in 2019, according to a government draft order, the portal Romania Insider reported today. The new quota represents an increase compared to the previous years. The maximum number of working permits for non-EU workers was 5,500 between 2014 and 2016, while in 2017, the contingent of non-EU employees was increased to 8,500. The raise of the number of non-EU workers in Romania is justified by the labour shortage in certain sectors, in particular in tourism, due to mass emigration in the previous years, local media recalled. According to a recent PwC survey, the economic losses in Romania due to skills and labour shortage amount to 6% of the GDP, the highest in Central- and Eastern Europe after Bulgaria (13.2% of GDP). (ANSA).