The EU Blue Card Directive: Implementation Appraisal

11-12-2015

Labour migration policy has the potential to tackle demographic challenges and labour market shortages. As noted in the European Commission's Work Programme for 2015, the operation of Directive 2009/50 and its evaluation could be the first step towards a new European policy on legal migration. The directive sets the conditions for the work and residence of the third-country (non-EU) nationals in the EU territory but it covers only a specific group of third-country nationals - highly-qualified workers and their family members. Despite the various positive aspects that have been introduced by the directive, such as a common European scheme for attracting highly-qualified workers from third-countries to the European Union, based on the available data one can note that there are various challenges to the existing EU Blue Card scheme. The main challenges include the general (un)attractiveness of the EU Blue Card scheme, limited use of the scheme, a lack of coordination between the EU Blue Card scheme and national schemes providing similar rights to the third-country nationals, and the limitation of the rights of the EU Blue Card holders including their intra-EU migration. Another considerable challenge to the scheme is linked with the problems of the transposition among the majority of the Member States. Although the Member States have in the end transposed the directive, their approach is very diverse. These issues present a serious stumbling block to the attractiveness and applicability of the EU Blue Card scheme. While the Parliament's role was limited to a consultation, during the adoption of the current EU Blue Card Directive, new amending legislation would be decided with the Parliament's full involvement under the ordinary legislative procedure.

Labour migration policy has the potential to tackle demographic challenges and labour market shortages. As noted in the European Commission's Work Programme for 2015, the operation of Directive 2009/50 and its evaluation could be the first step towards a new European policy on legal migration. The directive sets the conditions for the work and residence of the third-country (non-EU) nationals in the EU territory but it covers only a specific group of third-country nationals - highly-qualified workers and their family members. Despite the various positive aspects that have been introduced by the directive, such as a common European scheme for attracting highly-qualified workers from third-countries to the European Union, based on the available data one can note that there are various challenges to the existing EU Blue Card scheme. The main challenges include the general (un)attractiveness of the EU Blue Card scheme, limited use of the scheme, a lack of coordination between the EU Blue Card scheme and national schemes providing similar rights to the third-country nationals, and the limitation of the rights of the EU Blue Card holders including their intra-EU migration. Another considerable challenge to the scheme is linked with the problems of the transposition among the majority of the Member States. Although the Member States have in the end transposed the directive, their approach is very diverse. These issues present a serious stumbling block to the attractiveness and applicability of the EU Blue Card scheme. While the Parliament's role was limited to a consultation, during the adoption of the current EU Blue Card Directive, new amending legislation would be decided with the Parliament's full involvement under the ordinary legislative procedure.