To remedy the shortage of skilled workers, the federal government wants to enable people to immigrate to Germany by means of a points system, even if they cannot yet show that they have a job. This emerges from “key points on the immigration of skilled workers from third countries”, which the cabinet intends to adopt on Wednesday.

Third-country nationals “with good potential” should therefore be able to stay there to look for a job. “We will introduce an opportunity card for job search based on a transparent, unbureaucratic points system,” says the paper. Qualifications, language skills, work experience, connection to Germany and age are named as selection criteria.

“Germany urgently needs skilled workers across all sectors. That is why all potential at home and abroad must be leveraged,” the draft says in the introduction. Recognized foreign skilled workers remain the backbone of labor migration, and this “skilled worker pillar” is to be strengthened. The Federal Government is also committed to ensuring that international students and trainees stay in Germany after they graduate.

Under certain conditions, qualified third-country nationals should also be able to immigrate to Germany without prior formal recognition of their qualifications. This area is called the “experience pillar” in the paper. The “Potential Pillar” records those who can come to Germany via the points system.