Understanding EU's Blue Card
The Blue Card is a special work permit available to certain citizens of non-European Union nations that allows them to work and live anywhere across the EU. Three countries are not subject to the Blue Card proposal: Ireland, the United Kingdom, and Denmark. Comparable to the U.S. Green Card, the Blue Card is designed to be a straightforward method of bringing highly skilled people from outside the EU into the area to fill needed positions. First proposed in 2007, the Blue Card was enacted in 2011.
Benefits of the Blue Card
A Blue Card is valid for up to two years, and allows non-EU citizens to apply to work and live in any of the included EU member nations in a single process. Those approved for the Blue Card receive other benefits, including the ability to bring family with them to reside in the chosen nation through easier channels. Blue Card holders can eventually apply as permanent residents in the nation where they are living and working, applying their years with the Blue Card to residency requirements. Blue Card holders are given the same rights, working conditions, and salaries – sometimes higher salaries – as those offered to local workers.
Who Can Get a Blue Card?
The Blue Card is specifically aimed at bringing in workers with a post-secondary education who are citizens of non-EU nations. Thus applicants for the Blue Card must hold a degree at least on par with an associate’s degree or higher in their nation of education. Citizens of a few nations are excluded from the program, particularly those from the European Economic Area and those nations and territories that have ties to EU member nations.
How Blue Card Holders Gain EU Employment
Aside from the advantages of being able to easily accept employment in any of the participating nations, the Blue Card also offers holders access to the Blue Card Network. This is an electronic system where workers can upload their educational information in a resumé or CV, apply for the card, and be connected with employers seeking to hire skilled workers. The process of obtaining the card is completed when a job offer is made, and you can move forward with your plans to live and work in the EU.