Labor Market

Employers Want More Help with Refugees

refugee job training.dpa.Jan Woitas
A German driving coach trains a Syrian asylum seeker to drive a 40-ton truck in early 2016 as part of constructon firm Günter Papenburg's training program.
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    Placing migrants in the labor market is among Germany’s toughest integration challenges. The government needs employers’ help with training and employment.

  • Facts

    Facts

    • It is estimated that about a half of the refugees who have arrived in Germany in recent years will remain in the country long-term.
    • Berlin has proposed a set of measures to encourage faster labor-market integration of migrants, who are often low-skilled workers.
    • The government plans to make up to 10,000 apprenticeships available to migrant youth over the next 2 years.
  • Audio

    Audio

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The German government, tackling a wave of refugees reaching the country’s borders in the past year, is set to get some major backing for its attempts to integrate them into Germany’s labor market.

Germany’s employers’ federation plans to cautiously welcome the government’s new integration law, according to an internal report seen by Handelsblatt. But the Confederation of German Employers’ Associations, or BDA, also says it does not go far enough to promote labor market participation among the new arrivals.

The draft law, set for a vote in the German parliament on May 24, aims to ease the way into German society for over a million asylum seekers who arrived in the country last year.

In plans announced last month, German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s right-left coalition outlined measures to promote integration, offering refugees incentives to assimilate into German society, and threatening penalties for those who do not integrate with benefit cuts and even deportation.

The proposal also promised 100,000 new low-paid jobs for migrants in a bid to ease their way onto the job market. Under certain circumstances, laws requiring preference to be given to German or E.U. job applicants would be suspended.

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