Germany changes tack to warmer welcome for immigrants

Germany changes tack to warmer welcome for immigrants

Germany changes tack to warmer welcome for immigrants

New initiatives are being planned as a means to welcome immigrants to Germany in order to fill its skilled worker shortage.

Formerly known for its resistance to making migrant workers feel at home, Germany is now putting out the red carpet for skilled workers in the form of a welcome bag, a smartphone app and pre-migration personal counselling. The first stop for migrants straight off the plane may well be a welcome centre rather than the stern faces of immigration officers.

The schemes were thought up by a specially-constituted council tasked with coming up with ideas to improve immigration procedures and attract more skilled applicants. A comprehensive information package will be accessible online, and helpdesks will be set up in overseas states to encourage immigration.

According to Manfred Schmidt, head of the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees, incomers from diverse nations will be helped to feel at home by the cultural shift. However, given the obvious lack of skilled workers in the tech and electronics sectors, the red carpet may be longer and redder for those with relevant qualifications and expertise.

According to interested agencies, skilled workers still prefer new lives in Canada, Australia and the Scandinavian countries, with perhaps the English language a primary attraction. Schmidt believes it’s because of Australia’s long tradition of accepting immigrants, and admits Germany has a way to go before it can beat the trend.

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