The foundations for changing Germany’s immigration policy to attract more talented workers and fill hundreds of thousands of job openings have been laid by the country’s ruling coalition, a government source told Reuters on Friday.
According to the source, one of the revisions entails the introduction of an “opportunity card,” which will grant individuals the right to search for jobs in Germany based on a points system, with language proficiency, professional experience, and ties to Germany among the criteria.
The need for skilled labour is growing as the population ages, creating a demographic time bomb for Germany’s public pension system and risk to economic growth. As a result, the interior and labour ministers of Germany seek to make their country the top immigration destination in Europe.
For Germany to continue to be economically successful, qualified specialists are required, according to labour minister Hubertus Heil on Friday.
Research by the Labour Ministry predicts that by 2026, there would be a gap of almost 240,000 persons between the supply and demand of qualified labour.
According to the source, the Cabinet will decide on these pillars by mid-November, and a draught bill is anticipated in the first quarter of 2019.
The minimum salaries required to qualify for the EU-wide Blue Card as a work permit for university graduates or those with professional qualifications, for instance, should be lowered. People who have come to Germany for a language course would also be allowed to work part-time for up to 20 hours per week.
There will no longer be a requirement for a declaration from the Federal Labour Agency stating that no German applicant is being supplanted by a foreigner for the position when a foreigner enters Germany to begin an apprenticeship.
Non-EU citizens who meet the necessary requirements need should be permitted to visit Germany, even in the absence of formal acknowledgement of their professional credentials.
Berlin is also thinking of allowing “contingent and limited admittance regardless of qualifications” in the event that there is a severe lack of labour in some industries.
Germany will increase the number of language tests and courses it offers abroad while looking into ways to lower their cost. It also has intentions to increase the number of integrated German language training programmes offered, particularly in the nursing industry.