Immigration in Germany – a sad story

Many would agree to the statememt that Germany is a country of self-moaning and self-critizism. Especially from the outside this often seems exaggerated and unfounded. But the real problem is not the underestimation of our own strength but it is: dangerous self reference. This counts especially for the inability to face questions of immigration which are key to solving problems like demographic change, innovation and globalization. These questions are simply not adressed by any party, politican or lobby group.

Skilled workers are scarce

The German job market is growing again and skilled workers are scarce. Yet, no change in regulations, to work in Germany as a non-EU citizen (which does not even count for Eastern European countries who joined the Union in 2005) “even skilled workers will be granted work permits only in exceptional cases“. Some employers call for a change but there is a strange coalition of xenophobic rightwing conservatives and conservative leftist labour unions to prevent that.

Deadlocked in seperated powers

Moreover, like in education, German law gives the states (“Länder”) the responsibilty for executing immgration law. This way of separating power results in a deadlock and in political games between the differing ruling parties. “Due to this constitutional separation of powers, it is a good idea to contact your local foreigners authority if you have specific questions.” Well, from an outside view, e.g. you are sitting in an internetcafé in, let’s say, Mogadishu: who shall that be?

While waiting for being granted asylum don’t think you can work, even if you are skilled. People living here for years, who went to skool or even university – still, no permit. On the contrary, you would have to live here in constant fear of being deported suddenly. Even people who are perfectly integrated will have to leave – like refugees from Iraq who, since the Saddam regime is out of power, have officially lost the argument of being politically persecuted.

Educated first, thrown out later

German universities are full of people from all over the world which creates a vibrant and creative atmosphere of great cultural exchange. But once they finished their studies and set to be sucked up by the growing economy, they are sent away. Educated by the country and deported in the end – it is not only a cruel act but simply the greatest waste of potential.


While Germany’s population is shrinking, the economy is growing and for a few years there has been no immigration at all to Germany, on the contrary: More people left than came. It is arrogant and/or stupid to think a country, or a culture, and especially a national econmy would be able to solve all problems independently, in this case an economy which is interlinked and twined to global exchange on level reached like few others.

But I am not only talking about the engineers, the scientists, the investors or the computer specialists. I am talking about nurses, carers for the elderly, servive people in shops and cafés. There are people needed in some many jobs hardly anybody wants to do.

Wake up! Face the problem! Start a public discourse! And if you want, do it here. But start TALKING about it. We need a modern immigration law who let’s skilled and motivated people come here and doesn’t throw people out who are integrated parts of society.