Social Democrats draft new 'Canadian' immigration law
The centre-left junior partners of Germany's coalition government, the Social Democrats (SPD), published a draft law on immigration on Sunday which would be based on points.
The system, which has been influenced by Canadian points-based migration regulations, would allow people from outside the EU the chance to apply for residence status based on their qualifications and background.
After answering questions based on their academic qualifications, age, existing job offers, and familial relationships in Germany, wannabe immigrants would receive a score out of 100.
University graduates would need a score of at least 65 to stand a chance of being awarded a visa.
“A 25-year-old engineer from India who has a masters degree, speaks German and English, and has already received a job offer would gain a score of 75,” the SPD state in the draft law.
The SPD would seek for 25,000 immigrants to enter Germany within a year of the law coming into effect, and say that the Bundestag (German parliament) would then set the number of arrivals on a yearly basis.
Those awarded visas would be able to bring their immediate family with them. They would however have limited claims on basic social welfare for their first five years in the country.
The law would not affect current asylum laws, the SPD point out.
“Politically persecuted people would continue to have the right to apply for asylum. The desire to gain a job is clearly no ground for asylum,” the report states.
The SPD hope to pass the draft into law before national elections next autumn. But they are likely to face stiff opposition from the arch-conservative Bavarian Christian Social Union (CSU), who want prioritize people from Germany's "cultural sphere" in future immigration legislation.
Demographics experts say that without inward migration, Germany’s population will fall from its current level of 82 million to 60 million by the middle of the century. Economists believe that within the next ten years, ten million positions in the job market won’t be filled without migration.