“If we don’t take action, we will be short 7 million workers by 2035.”

These are the words of German Labor Minister Hubertus Heil in an interview with The Financial Times beginning of May.

A month later, Heil and German Chancellor Annalena Baerbock, They are on a full tour of Brazil, Colombia and Panama with the aim, among other things, of facilitating the recruitment of qualified professionals to fill vacant positions in their country.

“Latin America and Europe are natural partners,” Baerbock said at the beginning of the trip.

One in six companies in Germany suffers from a labor shortage, according to the latest annual report of the Federal Labor Agency (BA).

Except, personal error in 200 out of a total of 1,200 occupations evaluated in the study, compared to 148 last year.

The problem is not new. The German government passed the Skilled Immigration Act 2020 to attract specialists in understaffed sectors.

But that was not enough, and this year the authorities further eased the conditions for legal living and working in Germany, which about 400,000 skilled immigrants are needed each yearaccording to estimates.

We explain which occupations are most in demand and which conditions must be met in order to take advantage of the opportunities offered by the engine of Europe.

Medical staff

Nurses and doctors are the most sought after professionals. GETTY IMAGES

If you are a nurse or doctor, would you consider working in a hospital, clinic or apartment in Germany?

The country has a high life expectancy (83.4 years for women and 78.6 for men) and a significantly older population.

By 2035, more than 20 million Germans will be over 67 – Germany’s official retirement age – according to data from the Federal Statistical Office.

The demand for nurses and staff specialized in the care of the elderly already far exceeds the domestic supply, and in the coming years all studies show that it will continue to grow.

Currently there about 40,000 vacancies in hospitals, nursing homes and other care centers in the country, according to government data.

As for the request, it matters confirm the nursing degree in Germany or care and, if this does not reach the required level, take an exam or adaptation course.

In addition, you must have a minimum B1 (intermediate) level of the German language, prove that you are physically and mentally healthy and present a certificate of non-punishment.

The German health sector, although to a lesser extent, also needs to doctors.

In this case, state authorization is required to practice the profession and accept the job. To get it, the country where you want to work (Germany consists of 16 federal states) determines whether the medical training in the country of origin is equivalent to Germany.

Computer scientists, engineers and scientists

In the midst of an information technology (IT) revolution, Germany ranked 8th out of 132 countries in the Global Innovation Index 2022, a year in which its turnover in IT exceeded 113,000 million euros ($120 billion), according to government data.

If you have training or experience in this sector, you may find opportunities in a European country, especially in small and medium-sized companies.

They need qualified professionals in areas such as software development, software and hardware support, computer security or data science.

Germany they are also looking for engineers in different sectors, from construction planning and architecture to artificial intelligence to the automotive industry, which includes promising branches such as electric mobility and autonomous driving.

Engineering is one of the sectors that offers the most interesting opportunities. GETTY IMAGES

Planning and controlling production, conducting quality tests and designing or building equipment and models are some of the most sought-after tasks, and there is even the possibility of access to managerial positions if you are highly educated.

The scientists and mathematicians Graduates of Latin American universities also have opportunities in Germany, where they can access jobs in teaching, research, IT, marketing or administration, among other fields.

In the case of PhD students, it is possible to study research programs in a European country through scholarships and programs.

Drivers, experts and “green” jobs

As an economic and industrial powerhouse, Germany has an extensive and advanced logistics and transportation network that moves millions of products every day.

In 2021, 3.69 billion tons of goods were transported in Germany by trucks, 387.7 million by trains and 195 million by inland waterways. GETTY IMAGES

But there is a problem: lack of professional drivers who want to get behind the wheel of one of the more than 4 million trucks registered in the country, and even train and ship drivers are in short supply.

In fact, according to government data, more than one in four drivers on German roads are foreigners.

This job requires an appropriate driver’s license (C1 or higher on the EU scale), which can be obtained there through tests or certified from the country of origin if it has an agreement with Germany.

To a lesser extent, the country is also looking for it professionals such as handymen, carpenters, masons and plumbers or technicians heating and air conditioning.

On the other hand, the environmental protection industry is a growing source of employment in a country that is committed to achieving neutrality in greenhouse gas emissions by 2045.

According to research by KOFA (the center for attracting skilled labor), Germany faces a shortage of 216,000 workers for the expansion of solar and wind power.

Vacancies in the “green” sector include some of the specialties we have already mentioned in this article, from engineers and computer scientists to technicians in green energy plants. GETTY IMAGES


If you do not have a European passport, in order to get a job in Germany you will need a visa, obtaining which involves some conditions.

Among them, it is necessary to show knowledge of the German language at basic level A2 (although some positions, such as those in the health sector, require a higher level), provide enough money to survive during your stay in the country, and meet the specific requirements of each qualification program.

Once the visa is approved, the government approves it residence permit for up to 18 months in which the applicant can confirm professional qualifications or receive additional training.

After approval and readiness to work, you have one year to find a job in line with your profession.

Through these initiatives, Germany provides learning and development opportunities, bringing valuable jobs and economic opportunities to thousands of people.

However, some experts pointed out the possible negative effects that this kind of policy causes in the countries from which migrants come, especially the so-calledbrain drain“.

Sociologist Aly Tandian, president of the Senegalese Migration Observatory, recently criticized Germany’s relaxation of laws to attract talent abroad in The Conversation Africa.

He argued that this can cause not only a reduction in skilled human resources in developing countries, but also significant reductions in investment in education and health, as well as tax revenues.