Germany is looking for skilled Indians. From IT professionals to nurses, masons, and STEM students at German universities, who will have the opportunity to join jobs after their courses; the German coalition government led by Chancellor Olaf Scholz is focussed on rolling out the red carpet for Indian immigrants with the right skills.

“Chancellor Scholz spoke about welcoming Indians to Germany for skilled jobs. The demographic development and growing economy of Germany makes it urgent for skilled immigration to be integrated in our labour market needs. And India is top of the mind; it’s one of the most important countries that’s high on our agenda when we’re looking for well trained workers,” Dr Philipp Ackermann, German Ambassador to India, told Times of India in an exclusive interview.

He added that though the Indian diaspora is Germany – at around 200,000 people – is not very big yet; but that will be changing soon.

The German government has already put in place certain legislation to address the labour shortages and is making immigration simpler at different levels to help the growing economy cope with the need for skilled labour. “For Indian professionals who have a job contract with a company in Germany for above the stipulated salary level and of a certain duration of time; the work permit blue cards are easily processed in a very short time,” Ambassador Ackermann said. According to rough estimates, there are around 21,000 Indians in Germany on blue cards at present.

But it’s not just highly skilled knowledge workers that Germany is looking for from India. “We have a programme running in Kerala to train nurses and caretakers in German language skills. The first 150 candidates from there will soon be leaving for Germany,” Ackermann said.

He added that craftspeople, too, were being welcomed to Germany in view of labour market shortages. “There’s a clear outreach from several German states looking for workers in various crafts and India is an interesting labour market for us. The Indian government, too, has a positive approach towards immigration,” the ambassador said.

Some examples that he shared are of a group of masons, who are currently being trained in Bengaluru to join jobs in Germany and 12 Indian men from southern states who were already working as butchers in the Black Forest region in Germany. “There will be broader engagement from Germany to address our skills shortages from India and there are likely to be more and more people from different crafts and trades including bakers, butchers, carpenters and nurses moving to Germany from here,” Ackermann said. He added that crafts jobs were well respected in Germany with decent salaries and social recognition.

The Indian diaspora is not very big yet but as more and more Indians move to Germany with prestigious, high paying jobs, the number of people in prominent positions is likely to rise, according to the German Ambassador.

An example of a very successful Indian origin German in a prominent and well respected academic position is Dr Joybrato Mukherjee, the president of the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD).

“Sindhu Gangadharan, senior vice president and managing director, SAP Labs India, is another Indian doing well in a German organisation.

Before moving to Bengaluru she had spent 15 years in Germany and now she’s the boss of an organisation with 5000 IT engineers. She has a home in Frankfurt and she travels to Germany often. These are the kind of positive stories about Indian migration to Germany that we expect to see growing in the coming years,” Ackermann said.

Story by Ishani Duttagupta