In June 2017, the European Parliament’s Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs adopted a new law on the Blue Card working permits for highly-qualified non-EU nationals. The aim of this new law, which is part of the EU’s efforts to deliver on the European Agenda on Migration, is to help countries within the EU attract experts according to the needs of their labour market.
The EPP confirmed that the estimated economic impact of the new rules could go up to €6.2 billion every year.
The new law on the Blue Card working permits will essentially replace current national schemes. However EU countries’ governments will still be allowed to use mechanisms that ensure that these highly-qualified migrant workers are only engaged after employers have unsuccessfully searched for national workers, thus maintaining a balance between the need to find an answer to the issue of an ageing EU workforce and securing employment of EU citizens. Moreover EU countries will have control over the level of the salary threshold for migrant workers which will be calculated on the national average.
It is noteworthy that the new law grants the possibility of holders of the Blue Cards to travel for business trips of up to 90 days within the EU.