SAWT BEIRUT INTERNATIONAL

| 29 January 2023, Sunday |

German government defends plan to ease citizenship rules

In response to criticism from both the opposition and other members of the ruling coalition that it would encourage illegal immigration, the German government on Monday defended a proposal to make it simpler for people to seek for citizenship.

The administration has stated that it intends to increase immigration and training in order to address the skills gap that is weighing on the largest economy in Europe at a time of slowing growth and when an aging population is adding strain to the public pension system.

In response to criticism from both the opposition and other members of the ruling coalition that it would encourage illegal immigration, the German government on Monday defended a proposal to make it simpler for people to seek for citizenship.

The administration has stated that it intends to increase immigration and training in order to address the skills gap that is weighing on the largest economy in Europe at a time of slowing growth and when an aging population is adding strain to the public pension system.

Scholz further said that Germany, echoing a policy in other countries, would introduce a “transparent, unbureaucratic” immigration points system to allow foreigners who have the right qualifications to apply for work.

It would also be made easier to study or obtain qualifications in Germany, he said.

Scholz defended allowing immigrants to hold dual citizenship, arguing that “belonging and identity are not a zero-sum game.”

The draft legislation will be discussed by cabinet on Wednesday, Scholz said, after which it must be put to lawmakers in the Bundestag, the lower house of parliament.

The secretary-general of the FDP, the junior partner in coalition with the SPD and environmentalist Greens, has spoken out against the plan. In an interview with the Rheinische Post, Bijan Djir-Sarai questioned its timing while decrying a lack of progress on deportations and combating illegal migration.

Faeser played down differences in the coalition and said that all parties had signed up to the plan in their coalition agreement. The legal changes could take effect in the summer of 2023, she added.

    Source:
  • Reuters