Mobile  |  About us  |  Photos  |  Videos  |  Subscriptions  |  RSS Feeds  |  Today's Paper  |  Classifieds  |  Contact Us
The Daily Star
THURSDAY, 17 APR 2014
06:35 PM Beirut time
Weather    
Beirut
21 °C
Blom Index
BLOM
1,214.01down
International
Follow this story Print RSS Feed ePaper share this
Germany relaxes immigration rules to attract skilled labour
Reuters
Emblems of VW Golf VII car are pictured in a production line at the plant of German carmaker Volkswagen in Wolfsburg in this February 25, 2013 file photo.  REUTERS/Fabian Bimmer/file
Emblems of VW Golf VII car are pictured in a production line at the plant of German carmaker Volkswagen in Wolfsburg in this February 25, 2013 file photo. REUTERS/Fabian Bimmer/file
A+ A-

BERLIN: Germany sought on Wednesday to make it easier for skilled workers from outside the European Union to take a job in the country, trying to alleviate chronic shortages in areas such as engineering, train driving and plumbing.

Chancellor Angela Merkel's cabinet passed new immigration rules which, pending approval by parliament's upper house, aim to cut red tape for people in target industries, allowing them to get their qualifications recognised in Germany more easily.

The rules would come into effect in July.

"With this new decree we are jettisoning 40 percent of the old rules and leaving the door wide open for the skilled labour that can help our country progress," said Labour Minister Ursula von der Leyen in a statement.

Germany has already introduced a "blue card" system making it easier to hire foreign academics and has also made it easier for foreign nurses to work here. But it now needs more train drivers, plumbers and waste-disposal workers, the minister said.

In contrast to most of the EU, where joblessness has risen as a consequence of a global economic downturn and the euro zone debt crisis, Germany's employment rate is at its highest since reunification in 1990.

But an ageing population and relatively low immigration has created a lack of workers in certain professions and sectors, which free movement of labour in the EU has failed to resolve.

The government has already introduced measures to cut bureaucracy and encourage companies to recognise qualifications from abroad, but critics say it is not enough.

Immigration to Germany is growing as its economy outperforms most of Europe. Net immigration grew to 340,000 last year from 128,000 two years earlier, with many more arrivals from southern European countries hit by the debt crisis.

But this month the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) said Germany must liberalise the recruitment of foreigners to fill a projected shortfall of 5.4 million workers with vocational or tertiary qualifications by 2025.

German business welcomed the new rules. The BDA employers' federation said it would "facilitate the targeted immigration of badly-needed skilled labour also in non-academic areas", citing a particular shortage of skills in engineering and electronics.

It welcomed a "change of mentality" that would make foreign workers feel more welcome.

Many would-be migrants are put off by having to learn German, but language schools such as the Goethe Institute now report record enrolments while more German firms are starting to accept English as the language of the workplace.

 
Home International
 
     
 
Germany
Advertisement
Comments  

Your feedback is important to us!

We invite all our readers to share with us their views and comments about this article.

Disclaimer: Comments submitted by third parties on this site are the sole responsibility of the individual(s) whose content is submitted. The Daily Star accepts no responsibility for the content of comment(s), including, without limitation, any error, omission or inaccuracy therein. Please note that your email address will NOT appear on the site.

comments powered by Disqus
Advertisement


Baabda 2014
Advertisement
Follow us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Follow us on Linked In Follow us on Google+ Subscribe to our Live Feed
Multimedia
Images  
Pictures of the day
A selection of images from around the world- Thursday April 17, 2014
View all view all
Advertisement
Rami G. Khouri
Rami G. Khouri
Silencing Ayaan Hirsi Ali’s hate talk
Michael Young
Michael Young
Why confuse gibberish with knowledge?
David Ignatius
David Ignatius
Putin will keep rolling, until Obama says no
View all view all
Advertisement
cartoon
 
Click to View Articles
 
 
News
Business
Opinion
Sports
Culture
Technology
Entertainment
Privacy Policy | Anti-Spamming Policy | Disclaimer | Copyright Notice
© 2014 The Daily Star - All Rights Reserved - Designed and Developed By IDS