The updated Employment Ordinance (BeschV) came into effect in July 2013. Under the new regulations, employers could hire non-European Union citizens with certain qualifications without having to first check to see if a German or EU citizen is qualified for the role.
Since the law came into effect, only 170 work visas have been issued for those who qualify under Section 6.2.2 of the BeschV laws, according to numbers from the federal Labour Ministry (BA) published in Die Welt on Monday.
The ease in regulations was meant to bring in workers desperately needed to fill positions in Germany's aging workforce.
"Many regions are still looking for qualified professionals, especially those that require dual training – such as in the metal and electrical industry or geriatric care," said the Confederation of German Employers Association (BDA).
Those included in the BA's "White List" are electrical machine engineers, plumbers, nursing professions with and without specialisation and elderly care specialists.
However, the BDA also told dpa news agency that the low numbers could also mean that the regulations don't do enough to ease the bottleneck of non-EU workers hoping to find employment in Germany with those qualifications.
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