Germany is trying to ease citizenship rules

BERLIN: The German government said on Friday it was working on plans to speed up the naturalization of immigrants and “simplify” the path to citizenship by allowing dual citizenship.
The interior ministry aims to submit a draft law to the cabinet for approval “soon”, a spokesman told AFP.
Under the proposed new rules, naturalization would be possible after five years instead of eight, or at least three years for people deemed particularly well integrated.
Children born in Germany will automatically receive citizenship if one of their immigrant parents has lived in the country legally for at least five years.
The Home Office also plans to relax some language requirements for older immigrants and make it easier for people to hold multiple nationalities.
A major overhaul of Germany’s citizenship law was a key promise of Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s center-left coalition government when it came to power a year ago.
It comes as Germany, an aging country of more than 80 million people, faces acute labor shortages in numerous industries.
The Labor Ministry has predicted a shortage of around 240,000 skilled workers by 2026 in Europe’s biggest economy.
“We will create a modern citizenship law,” Scholz’s three-party government said in its coalition agreement.
“To this end, we will make multiple citizenships possible and simplify the way to obtain German citizenship.”