“The revision of the Blue Card rules aims above all to motivate highly-qualified people from third countries to fill vacancies in the Union’s labour market, which is facing an ageing population and increasing skills requirements”, said Tomáš Zdechovský, EPP Group MEP responsible for the issue, ahead of tonight’s debate in the European Parliament on new rules for admitting skilled workers to the EU.
The EU is increasingly competing with other countries in the global race for talented and skilled workers. Of all non-EU migrants coming to OECD countries, only 31% of highly-educated migrants choose an EU destination. Almost 37,000 skilled professionals received an EU Blue Card in 2019. The US issues 140,000 Green Cards every year. “We all want a strong EU. The revision of the Blue Card Directive is one of the keys to improving European competiveness and boosting economic growth. I am glad that the EPP Group has made a big effort to reach these goals”, added Zdechovský.
The agreement on the revised Blue Card, which will be adopted tomorrow by the Plenary of the European Parliament, presents efficient guidelines for attracting highly-skilled workers to the EU, including more flexible admission conditions, better salaries, family reunification, improved rights and the possibility to move and work more easily between EU Member States. “The new rules will simplify the conditions for job mobility for these workers across the EU or allow applicants to renew their university degrees in the field”, Zdechovský continued.
The Member States will continue to determine the conditions for granting access to their labour markets. Furthermore, they will be allowed to use mechanisms that ensure that these highly-skilled non-EU workers are only admitted after employers have unsuccessfully searched for national workers.
The reformed rules on the Blue Card Directive are an important part of the EU’s overall migration policy, the Pact on Migration and Asylum. After the formal adoption of the Directive, Member States will have 2 years to transpose the rules into national law.