Germany is making it easier for foreign workers to move to the country this summer – Euronews

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The Opportunity Card allows non-EU citizens to come to Germany for a year in order to search for a job.

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If you’ve been thinking about relocating to Germany, this new work permit might be for you.

Germany is seeking more skilled workers and has introduced a new way for qualified foreign nationals to move to the country.

Called the Opportunity Card, it allows non-EU citizens to come to Germany for a year in order to search for a job.

Here’s who is eligible and how the card works.

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There’s a new way for foreign workers to move to Germany

The idea for the Chancenkarte, which translates as Opportunity Card, was first floated in 2022 as a way to make it easier for foreign workers to find employment in Germany.

It is now launching on 1 June 2024 as the country seeks to bolster its scarce supply of young, skilled workers.

Germany requires around 400,000 new skilled employees a year to cover the shortage, especially in the fields of engineering, IT and healthcare.

Germany’s new work permit lets you job seek for a year

The Opportunity Card acts like a temporary visa or work permit, allowing non-EU citizens to live in the country for up to one year.

During this period, cardholders are allowed to take on part-time jobs amounting to no more than 20 hours per week or undertake trial work experiences lasting two weeks.

The purpose is to make it easier for skilled workers to find suitable employment and for companies in need of employees to find foreign workers to fill the roles.

If a cardholder wishes to transition to a full-time job, they can apply for longer-term residency – a process made easier because the applicant already has a job offer.

Who is eligible for Germany’s Opportunity Card?

If you want to apply for the Chancenkarte, you need to have completed at least two years of vocational training or hold a university degree from your country of origin that is relevant to your desired role.

Applicants also need to be competent in German or English.

Those interested must prove they have the funds or salary from a part-time employment contract to cover their stay in Germany for a year – just over €12,000.

Candidates are ranked using a points system with the minimum requirement being six points.

There are four points available for holding a professional qualification recognised in Germany or having permission to practise a regulated profession like teacher, nurse or engineer.

Three points are given to applicants with five years of professional experience in their field completed within the last seven years or German language skills at B2 level according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).

Two years of professional experience with previous vocational training within the last five years, being under the age of 35 at the time of application and holding a B1 certificate for German each earns two points.

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One point is given for: being under 40 at the time of application; having stayed previously in Germany for at least six months (excluding for tourism purposes); C1 English and A2 German language skills; being trained in an occupation where there is a shortage of workers in Germany; and applying together with a spouse.

Those interested can apply for the Opportunity Card at the German consulate in their home country of the local Foreigners’ Registration Office in Germany.

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