The EuroVisaSolutions.com “News” webpage is where you can read information about living and working in Germany, Sweden and Portugal; visas and immigration; quality of life; education; points of interest; and other topics.
According to the German government’s statistics agency, a record 2.6 million people were approved for immigration to Germany during 2022. This included 1.1 million refugees fleeing the war in Ukraine to find safety living in Germany. There was also an increase of refugees immigrating to Germany from Turkey, Syria and Afghanistan in 2022 compared with the year before. Immigration to Germany from countries in the European Union (EU) was higher in 2022 than in 2021, with Bulgaria, Poland and Romania the top countries of origin. To read more, click here!
On June 23, 2023, the German Bundestag (Parliament) approved a new immigration reform law that will make it easier for skilled foreign workers from non-EU countries to live and work in Germany. As part of the German immigration reforms that were passed, a new “Opportunity Card” will be made available to eligible skilled foreign workers from outside the European Union (EU) which will permit them to look for jobs in Germany and interview with employers from inside the country for up to 12 months. The new Opportunity Card will also allow skilled foreign workers from non-EU countries to perform casual work in Germany up to 20 hours per week during the time they are searching for qualifying jobs in Germany. Once a job-seeker from a non-EU country secures a qualifying offer of skilled employment in Germany, he or she can apply for a Residence Permit or EU Blue Card (depending on their situation). Another German immigration reform involves recognition of degrees. To read more, click here!
During a visit to Kenya in May 2023, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz met with Kenyan President William Ruto and discussed immigration to Germany from Kenya and other countries as well as opportunities for around 250,000 skilled immigrants to work in Germany. The German leader believes there is great potential for Kenyans to help fill many jobs in Germany, which has an urgent need for skilled foreign workers. Nairobi has a thriving information technology (IT) sector and has been nicknamed the “Silicon Savannah” because of its many IT professionals and its promising start-up environment. Both Chancellor Scholz and President Ruto agree that there is a “win-win” situation for countries that send skilled immigrants to live and work in Germany. To read more, click here!
A new report from the Destatis Federal Statistic Office released on April 20, 2023, revealed that 15.3 million people living in Germany are immigrants, accounting for 18.4% of the country’s population. The German statistics agency also reported that 24.3% of the people living in Germany are immigrants or the children of two immigrant parents, which is 6.3% higher than in 2021. Furthermore, more than six million people immigrated to Germany from 2013 to 2022, which is a record for German immigration. Why do people immigrate to Germany? The top reasons for moving to Germany include seeking asylum or fleeing as refugees (27.9 percent); searching for jobs in Germany (24.2 percent); joining family already living in Germany (23.8 percent); and to study in Germany (8.2 percent). To read more, click here!
Two recent studies examined the shortage of workers in Germany and found that it affects all sectors of the German economy and it is growing. The German Economic Institute (IW), which is based in Cologne, reports that Germany’s worker shortage remains at an overall high level, while the German Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DIHK) has stated that “the shortage of skilled workers is increasing” and “exists across industries”. According to Stefan Hardege, who is a DIHK expert on the German labor market, workers who are looking for jobs in Germany are in a favorable situation to receive higher salaries and improved working conditions, because there is a high demand for them. He said that employers are trying to attract skilled workers by improving work-life balance and offering mobile work options. Some of the high-demand jobs in Germany include train drivers, social workers, educators, care workers for the elderly, as well as workers for electrical and metal trades. The DIHK labor market expert also thinks the new German immigration reforms to attract more foreign specialists are “very important” for the country. To read more, click here!
On March 29, 2023, the German government unveiled some of its new reforms that are designed to promote skilled immigration to Germany from non-EU countries, make the German immigration process easier for skilled foreign workers from non-EU countries, and also improve skills training in Germany. During 2022, German job vacancies jumped to almost 2 million, which is the most ever recorded in Europe’s largest economy. German government officials have been discussing and taking steps to increase the number of skilled foreign workers who will move to Germany from non-EU countries, such as in The Balkans and throughout Africa. According to the German Finance Minister, “Anyone who can contribute to the country’s economic success as a skilled worker is welcome.” The German Interior Minister also declared, “If people bring professional experience or personal potential with them, we will make it possible for them to gain a foothold in our labor market.” The German immigration reforms, which must still be approved by the German Parliament, will offer three pathways to foreign workers who want to live and work in Germany. To read more, click here!
Germany is experiencing a shortage of skilled professionals to fill positions in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields. This skills shortage is occurring in Germany because many highly-skilled German workers are retiring and not enough university students in the country are studying STEM subjects. According to an analysis by the German Economic Institute, which is located in Cologne, 320,000 qualified workers were needed as of April 2022 to fill STEM jobs in Germany. There is growing pressure for Germany to find enough STEM professionals as the country pursues a “green” and digital transformation. Many see skilled foreign workers as the solution to Germany’s skills shortage. In fact, there has been a large increase of foreign professionals moving to Germany to work in computer science, engineering or other technical fields. To read more, click here!
The German government wants to attract more skilled foreign workers from non-EU countries to work in Germany. This is because there are not enough skilled German workers available to fill thousands of jobs in Germany that are currently vacant and workers from EU-member countries are not moving to Germany in sufficient numbers to meet demand. Therefore, German immigration reforms are being planned that will make it easier for skilled immigrants from non-EU countries to live and work in Germany. For example, the German Cabinet, led by Chancellor Olaf Scholz, approved a new chancenkarte (“Opportunity Card”) in November 2022 that will permit non-EU workers to look for jobs in Germany while living in the country, which can be more effective that searching for work in Germany from outside the country. The German Parliament still needs to approve the new Opportunity Card, however, this is expected to take place sometime in 2023. According to the Institute for Employment Research, there were a record 1.7 million jobs in Germany advertised during 2022. To read more, click here!
A survey of 17,000 people around the world conducted in 2022 by US News & World Report, the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School and BAV Consulting has found that Sweden is considered to be the #1 best country for quality of life. According to the survey results, Sweden received a perfect score of 100% for its well-developed public education system; 96.2% for being family-friendly; 96.1% for political stability; 95.1% for safety; 94.2% for well-developed public health system; 91.0% for having a good job market; 90.0% for economic stability; and 87.5% for income equality. To read more, click here!
The 2022 InterNations Expat Explorer Survey has declared Portugal the top country in Europe for expats to live abroad. Portugal was also ranked the world’s #4 best country for expats to live abroad in 2022. According to the global survey results, 85% of expats are generally happy overall living in Portugal; 93% think it is safe and easy to travel throughout Portugal on foot or via bicycle; and 90% like the weather and climate in Portugal. Furthermore, expats think that it is easy to make friends in Portugal and most enjoy the country’s social life. Although the salaries in Portugal are generally lower than in many other European countries, the cost of living in Portugal is also low. To read more, click here!
Germany has been rated the #2 best country in the world for 2022 following #1 Switzerland and ahead of #3 Canada, #4 United States, #5 Sweden, #6 Japan, #7 Australia, #8 United Kingdom, #9 France, #10 Denmark and many other countries. More than 17,000 people participated in a worldwide survey conducted by US News & World Report, BAC Consulting and the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School. Germany was ranked #2 overall as well as #1 for entrepreneurship; #2 for agility; #4 for power; #7 for quality of life; #9 for cultural influence; #13 for social purpose; #21 for heritage; #23 for being open for business; #42 for adventure; and #44 for being different and dynamic. To read more, click here!
Immigration to Germany is being simplified for skilled foreign workers, as the German government tries to meet the needs of the country’s job market. Europe’s largest economy is facing a major labor shortage and needs an additional 400,000 foreign workers per year to help fill skilled jobs in Germany in various business sectors. There is a particularly high demand for skilled immigrants to fill information technology, construction and healthcare jobs in Germany. According to Hubertus Heil, the German Labor Minister, Germany will need an additional seven million skilled foreign workers by 2035. To read more, click here!