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Germany Needs 400,000 Skilled Foreign Workers Annually

(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – Germany needs at least 400,000 immigrants per year, from both within and outside the European Union (EU), according to figures released by the German Federal Employment Agency on Thursday.

The agency said Germany’s attempts to attract skilled workers from abroad are failing to keep up with the current demand. Last year, the agency’s International Placement Services (ZAV) helped 3,200 skilled foreign workers gain a foothold in the German labour market – 700 more than in 2020.

Chairman of Federal Employment Agency, Detlef Scheelahge said that number is far too low to meet Germany’s needs for skilled labour.

When the Skilled Workers Immigration Act came into force in 2020, it was hoped that at least 10,000 people per year would come to Germany from outside the EU.

However, the coronavirus pandemic and the travel restrictions that came with it, as well as changes in the needs of the countries of origin, brought immigration to Germany to a virtual standstill for a spell.

Meanwhile, the agency has concluded cooperation agreements with countries such as Indonesia, Mexico and Colombia to promote immigration amid calls from industry to boost the numbers of new arrivals.

The agreements encourage people from a number of vocations to come to Germany. For example, nursing staff, cooks and gardeners.

In a related development, the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) has disclosed that the population of Germany stagnated further in 2021 at around 83.2 million, noting that the preliminary figure was roughly the same as the number given in the previous two years.

“In 2021, the stagnating population was due to the increased number of deaths, which clearly exceeded the number of births. The gap between births and deaths, however, was filled by higher net immigration. Net migration had decreased in 2020,” the agency said.

The halt in population growth has been partially attributed to the pandemic, which has slowed migration to Germany. Prior to 2019, Germany had seen a general trend of population growth over decades.

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