Germany plans to make skilled immigration easier

On 30 November, the German Government agreed its key points on the immigration of skilled workers from third countries. It thus paves the way for the most modern immigration law Germany has ever had. The key points provide for facilitating immigration firstly for skilled workers with recognised foreign vocational qualifications, secondly for skilled workers with proven professional experience, and thirdly by introducing an opportunity card for job-seeking.

Immigration with recognised vocational qualification

People from third countries with a German qualification or a qualification recognised in Germany will be able to work in all qualified occupations. The EU Blue Card, with its favourable conditions for family reunification, permanent residence and changing jobs, is to be made available to even more skilled workers with university degrees in future. In addition, educational migration is to be strengthened by making it even more attractive to come to Germany for vocational training or studies and to stay here.

Immigration with proven work experience

A foreign vocational or higher education qualification and work experience in the desired (non-regulated) occupation will in future be sufficient for entering Germany. Formal recognition of the foreign professional qualification will not be required in these cases. However, a salary threshold must be met or a collective agreement must be in place. This ensures fair working conditions.

Alternatively, it is possible for skilled workers from third countries to initiate the recognition of their foreign professional qualification only after entering the country, in contrast to the current situation, and to already be in qualified employment at the same time.

Immigration with an opportunity card

With the opportunity card, skilled workers from abroad should be able to obtain a residence permit for up to one year to look for work, which already entitles them to trial jobs or part-time jobs. This is to be granted on the basis of a points system. The selection criteria are to include, in particular, qualifications, language skills, work experience, reference to Germany and age.


The BQ-Portal provides companies and recognition bodies with comprehensive information to help them better assess foreign professional qualifications. The BQ-Portal currently has over 100 descriptions of foreign vocational education and training systems and over 5,000 foreign professional profiles.