European Union decides to go ahead with Blue Card

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The EU has had to deal with a falling birth rate and increased competition for skilled worker s from non EU Countries. The EU "Blue Card" will make the EU more attractive for immigrants. Skilled foreign workers will be given the right to live and work in the EU under the Blue Card scheme.

"The period of validity of the EU Blue Card will be between one and four years, with the possibility of renewal. A Blue Card may also be issued or renewed for smaller periods in order to cover the work contract, plus three months," said the Council of EU in a press statement.

The Brussels-based Council of the European Union adopted the resolution establishing the Blue Card residence permit on 25 May. However, each Member State has to enact laws in their own Country to implement the scheme which could delay the Blue Card by up to two years. EU members such as the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Denmark are not included in the countries that need to adopt the Blue Card system.

The population in Europe has been in decline over the last twenty years. To take an example labor shortages in Germany are such that retirees are being taken out of retirement to rejoin the workforce. An European Commision (EC) paper predicts that the region could lose half of its work force in the next 50 years. It is expected that the Blue Card scheme will help the EU deal with its labour shortages.