Skilled personnel welcome

A new law faciliates the migration of skilled workers to Germany. Here are the requirements.
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A new law is intended to facilitate the migration of skilled workers to Germany. Here are the requirements.

The German economy lacks specialists, and demographic change will increase the shortage. Currently around 1.2 million jobs places are unfilled. A new law is therefore intended to open access to the German labour market for skilled workers from countries outside the EU. It is an immigration law. This detail harbours a prospect: skilled workers are welcome to stay.

When does the Skilled Labour Immigration Act come into effect?

The German parliament passed the law on the immigration of skilled workers on 7 June 2019. It is expected to enter into force in early 2020. According to estimates by the Federal Government, the new rules will bring an additional 25,000 skilled workers to Germany each year.

Who is considered a specialist?

Both academics with a university degree recognized in Germany and workers with qualified professional training recognized in Germany.

What's new about it?

  • If you do not have an employment contract but can prove you have qualified professional training, you will receive a residence permit for six months in order to find a job. During this time, jobseekers can work up to ten hours a week on probation or do an internship; prerequisites are good German language skills at B2 level and enough money to live on.
  • Previously, the Federal Employment Agency examined whether there were suitable applicants for a job from Germany or the EU before a company was allowed to hire a skilled worker from another country. This priority check has been dropped, but it can be reintroduced if the labour market changes.
  • Graduates of German schools abroad may come to Germany not only to study, but also to seek a place at a German higher education institution or a trainee position.
  • The immigration of skilled workers from non-EU countries is not restricted to defined “shortage occupations”.

In what professions are specialists lacking?

Sought, for example, are doctors, physiotherapists and nurses, IT specialists, engineers and craftsmen in the construction industry, experts in aerospace, mechatronics, electrical engineering, energy technology and other STEM professions (mathematics, computer science, natural sciences and technology).

Since IT specialists are particularly sought-after, there is a special regulation for them. They can enter the country without training - provided they can prove that they have been working in the business for several years.

Where can foreign skilled workers find information about working in Germany?

The multi-lingual portal bundles information about job search, qualifications, language courses, visas, working environment and the formalities of everyday life.

The portal also provides information about the recognition of professional qualifications.

This article was originally published on .

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