EU Blue Card: Commission welcomes political agreement on new rules for highly skilled migrant workers
The Commission welcomes the agreement reached today by the European Parliament and the Council on new rules for the entry and residence of highly skilled workers from outside the EU under the revised Blue Card Directive. The new scheme will introduce efficient rules for attracting highly skilled workers to the EU, including more flexible admission conditions, enhanced rights and the possibility to move and work more easily between EU Member States. Agreement on the revised Blue Card is a key objective of the New Pact on Migration and Asylum.
Attracting new skills and talent
The EU is increasingly competing with other destinations in the global race for talent. While Member States are responsible for deciding on the number of persons they admit for labour purposes, an improved framework at EU level will put Member States and businesses in the best possible position to attract the talent they need. The new scheme will introduce the following changes:
The European Parliament and the Council will still need to confirm formally today's political agreement by adopting the EU Blue Card Directive. Once the Directive is formally adopted, Member States will have 2 years to transpose the rules into national law.
In 2016, the European Commission proposed to reform the Blue Card Directive, after identifying a number of weaknesses in the initial scheme, adopted in 2009, including restrictive admission conditions and the existence of parallel rules that created additional burdens for employers and applicants.
The reformed rules are an important part of the EU's overall migration policy, that aims to attract skills and talent and providing legal pathways to the EU, as highlighted in the New Pact on Migration and Asylum. The Commission will soon launch Talent Partnerships with non-EU partner countries to help match labour and skill needs in the EU and link skilled workers, employers, social partners, labour market institutions, and education and training through dedicated outreach and by building a network of involved enterprises, as well as financially support mobility schemes for work or training. Later in the year, the Commission will also propose a skills and talent package.