EU: 'Blue Card' rules on migration for highly-skilled employment: Council seeking "common ground" with the Parliament


Certain aspects of migration to EU states for the purpose of highly-skilled employment are governed by a 2009 law known as the 'Blue Card' Directive. In 2016, the Commission published a proposal to replace those rules, but negotiations between the Council and Parliament stalled. Recently, however, a number of secret "trilogue" meetings between Council and Parliament negotiators have been held, and the German Presidency of the Council is looking to find a way to reach agreement on the legislation.

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See: NOTE from: Presidency to: JHA Counsellors (Migration, Integration, Expulsion): Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on the conditions of entry and residence of third-country nationals for the purposes of highly-skilled employment - Blue Card Reform: State of play and possible way forward (13407/20, LIMITE, 26 November 2020, pdf, emphasis in original):

"In light of the above and with a view to testing possible compromise solutions regarding the following political issues, the Presidency would like to ask Member States where and to what extent they see room for manoeuvre concerning these points:

I. Harmonisation

1. Parallel national systems (Article 3 paragraph 4)


2. bilateral/multilateral agreements (point (b) of Article 4(1))

II. Skills


III. Long-term mobility (Article 20)

1. Notification procedure vs. application procedure


2. Start working immediately


3. Documents to be presented


IV. Unemployment


V. Labour market tests"

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