Cutting red tape: the European Commission wants to amend the European Blue Card Directive

8 years ago
Cutting red tape: the European Commission wants to amend the European Blue Card Directive

Restrictive admission conditions of the EU Blue card are a burden for employers, which have limited the use of the scheme. This is clearly insufficient so far to improve EU’s competitiveness.

Hence a new proposal on legal migration from the European Commission, aimed to address skills shortages and attract talent, with the following amendments:

1- Speed up the process.

Applications now handled within 90 days maximum, would have to be processed within 60 days.

Nowadays in France, timeframe vary from 60 to 90 days.


2 - Facilitate the process for some “recognized employers”.

If the Member States wants to, they can offer a procedure reducing the administrative burden and shorting the turnarounds even below the 60 days limit.

For instance, it won’t be required to provide evidence of professional experience or higher education qualifications of the worker.

3 - Widen the scope of non EU nationals who can apply

  • With a lower general salary threshold, equivalent to the average national salary or at the highest 1.4 times the average national salary.
  • With a 6 months contract (while a 12 months contract is required nowadays).
  • With professional experience being equivalent to higher education qualifications. France already chose this path, which will become compulsory for all the Member States.

4 - Make the program more attractive to non EU workers

  • Who shall have a full access to other highly skilled employment
  • Who may engage in self-employed activity, in parallel to the EU Blue Card job
  • Who can visit other member states for short-term business trips (less than 90 days over a 6 month period) without requesting any additional authorization other than the EU Blue card issued by the first State of residency

EU member state (excluding United Kingdom, Denmark and Ireland) will have 2 years to implement the new directive, once it’s adopted by the EU.

See the EU factsheet for more information and the online comparison of the national scheme of each Member state.

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