Germany immigration Germany is the second most popular migration destination in the world, after the United States. On 1st January 2005, a new immigration law came into effect. The political background to this new law was that Germany, for the first time ever, acknowledged itself to be an “immigration country”. Although the practical changes to immigration procedures were relatively minor, new immigration categories such as highly skilled professionals and scientists were introduced to attract valuable professionals to the German labour market. The development within German immigration law clearly shows that immigration of skilled employees and academics is eased while the labour market remains closed for unskilled workers.
Recently, a new Europe-wide law has been passed, allowing highly skilled non-EU citizens easier access to work and live in Germany, subject to meeting certain requirements.
In 2012, 91.3% (73.8 million) of residents in Germany had German citizenship, while 80% (64.7 million) of the population were Germans with no immigrant background and 20% (16.3 million) were people with immigrant background, especially 3.0 million (3.7%) had Turkish, 1.5 million (1.9%) Polish, 1.2 million (1.5%) Russian and 0.76 million (0.9%) Italian background.
In 2013, the most notable people without the German citizenship are Turkish (1.55 million), Polish (0.61 million), Italian (0.55 million) and Greek citizens (0.32 million).