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EU stops proceedings against Malta over blue card warning

European Commission warns member states over red tape facing highly qualified migrants under ‘blue card’ scheme.

27 February 2012, 12:00am
EU Commissioner Jacques Barrot has stopped proceedings against Malta on implementing the blue card laws.
The European Commission has decided to end the proceedings against Malta, Romania and Luxembourg for being late in implementing the Blue Card Directive, after they brought into force the national legislation necessary.

Three member states have been warned by the Commisson that they are making it too difficult for highly skilled people to come and work in the EU.

Despite having been warned in July 2011, Austria, Cyprus and Greece have not yet transposed the rules of the Blue Card Directive, which should have been implemented before 19 June 2011.

The EU Blue Card Directive puts in place common and efficient rules that allow highly skilled people from outside Europe to come and work in our labour markets, filling gaps that cannot be filled by EU nationals. It establishes a fast-track admission procedure for these foreigners and ensures a common set of social and economic rights, such as equal treatment with nationals as regards working conditions and pay, as well as access to goods and services.

All EU Member States except Denmark, the UK and Ireland are bound by the Blue Card law.

The EU Blue Card scheme helps attract highly qualified migrants to Europe to fill gaps in their labour markets that cannot be filled by their own nationals, other EU nationals or legally resident non-EU nationals.

Once a member state grants a Blue Card to a migrant, after two years that person can then benefit from free access to highly qualified employment positions in that Member State and can also move to another EU Member State where their skills may be needed.

Coupled with preferential rules for acquiring long term resident status and for family reunification, the Blue Card scheme presents an attractive package to potential highly qualified migrants.