To combat skills shortages
Schnitzer calls for more immigration
7/3/2023 12:29 am
Hundreds of thousands of skilled workers are already lacking in Germany today and demographic change is exacerbating the problem. According to Schnitzer, Germany needs 1.5 million immigrants a year to tackle the shortage of skilled workers.
In order to address the shortage of skilled workers, economics Monika Schnitzer proposes more immigration. “Germany needs 1.5 million immigrants a year if, minus the considerable emigration, we have 400,000 new citizens every year and want to maintain the number of workers,” said the economist of the “Süddeutsche Zeitung”.
“We urgently need a culture of welcome,” added Schnitzer, who heads the German government’s council of experts. The new Skilled Workers Act is a step in the right direction. “However, more is needed. For example, immigration offices that don’t deter immigrants, but offer service. We shouldn’t demand that foreign specialists speak German for every job. We should make sure that the employees of the immigration authorities speak English.”
In order to address the shortage of skilled workers, Germany must also invest more in children. “It’s an indictment that one in four fourth graders can’t read properly.” The companies have to keep the older employees happy so that they don’t retire early. Schnitzer said that the Federal Republic was not making as much progress “as we could and should”. Among other things, they have not invested in the infrastructure, are lagging far behind in digitization and have started too late with climate protection.
At the end of June, the Bundestag voted to reform the immigration rules for foreign skilled workers. The law aims to make it easier and more attractive for qualified workers from countries outside the EU to take up a job in Germany. Among other things, a points system based on the Canadian model and easier recognition of foreign professional qualifications are planned.