Permits Foundation welcomes provisions for family members in new EU Blue Card07 October 2021
The European Council voted today to approve the revised EU Blue Card Directive on the entry and residence of third-country nationals for the purposes of highly-skilled employment.
The reformed rules are part of the EU’s overall migration policy to attract and retain talent and provide legal pathways to the EU in light of the projected ageing population and shortage of certain skills. Included in the text are clauses that will affect the rights of non-EU family members when they join the Blue Card holder and look to access work in a Member State.
Permits Foundation welcomes that, following an agreement between the EU institutions, the new Blue Card will maintain direct work authorisation for recognised dependants of Blue Card holders, reduce the waiting period for family reunion and also enable non-EU family members of EU citizens to take-up the Blue Card.
Speaking after the vote, Permits Foundation Director, Helen Frew said: “Access to employment for partners has a positive impact on highly-skilled employees’ willingness to accept, complete and extend an international relocation, as well as on health, well-being and integration into the host country. Particularly since the pandemic, families welcome processes that can facilitate moving together as a unit. Partners of international employees – the majority of whom are highly-skilled themselves – need certainty that they can access work before the decision to relocate is made.
The vote today, following the vote at the European Parliament, demonstrates that the EU remains a global frontrunner in developing inclusive policy that supports international dual careers – helping to attract needed talent.”
Permits Foundation has been carrying out advocacy on the revised Blue Card Directive since it was initially proposed in 2016. Early versions of the text had included a potential labour market test for dependants before they could access employment. The Foundation has been reaching out to policy makers and is pleased that this proposed clause has now been deleted.
The revised Blue Card Directive will shortly be published in the Official Journal, after which, Member States will have two years to implement. Permits Foundation will be monitoring country developments.
About Permits Foundation
Permits Foundation is an independent not for profit corporate initiative supported by over 40 major international companies and other organisations. We engage with governments world-wide to help enable employment access for dependants of highly-skilled mobile employees. Evidence from our international surveys shows that this results in a triple-win for the host country, employers and employee families. More than 30 countries worldwide have adopted the best practice of allowing direct work access for dependants of highly-skilled mobile employees. The Foundation tracks the current state of play on our world map where we also highlight our current advocacy work.