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Acquiring a German passport

will become easier and faster

May 2023: Germany will make it easier for foreign residents to become German citizens. The government has just published the final draft of its long-awaited bill to speed up and simplify the naturalisation of foreign passport holders. It will also be easier to hold dual citizenship which is particularly important to the 1.5 million Turks living in Germany without a German passport. In future, people will need to have lived only five years in Germany instead of eight. Foreign residents who have shown a strong commitment to the country can apply for German citizenship after only three years of residency. German interior minister, Nancy Faeser, said before the press that the government wants people who have become part of German society to also be able to help shape the country democratically. She cited Canada as a good example that this perspective was crucial for attracting urgently needed skilled workers. Naturalisation should become a normal process for those who are committed to making Germany their home. Citizenship strengthens integration. Under the proposed law, children born in Germany to foreign parents will also be able to become Germans more quickly if at least one parent has lived in the country for five years. Acquiring and holding German citizenship is the strongest commitment to Germany’s free and diverse society and its values. “Anyone who does not share our values cannot become a German,” the minister made clear. “Those with racist, antisemitic, xenophobic or any other form of misanthropic views will be denied citizenship.” At the end of 2021, around 72.4 million people with German citizenship and around 10.7 million with foreign citizenship lived in Germany, of whom around 5.7 million had already been in Germany for at least ten years. In an EU-wide comparison, Germany does not naturalise very many people - measured by the number of people living in Germany without German citizenship. Sweden had the highest naturalisation rate in 2020. There, 8.6 per cent of all foreigners who lived there that year were naturalised. In Germany, the rate was 1.1 per cent. Naturalisation in the EU (As a percentage of foreign residents in 2020) Sweden: 8.6% Portugal: 5.5% Netherlands: 4.8% Finland: 2.9% Italy: 2.6% Spain: 2.4% Belgium: 2.4% Poland: 2.0% France: 1.7% Greece: 1.5% Croatia: 1.3% Romania: 1.3% Denmark: 1.3% GERMANY: 1.1% Hungary: 1.1% Slovenia: 1.1% Ireland: 0.9% Slovakia: 0.7% Austria: 0.6% Czech Republic: 0.5%

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1 Comment

May 28, 2023

German is a very difficult language to learn. Fluency should not be a requisite for obtaining a German passport

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