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Indians top growing foreign STEM professionals in Germany: Report

The number of foreign STEM professionals in Germany increased significantly over the last decade with Indians forming the largest cohort from non-EU countries, according to a new study.

With over 30,000 in 2012 to almost 122,000 by the end of 2022, working STEM professionals from non-EU countries more than quadrupled, The Local news portal reported, citing a recent study by the Institute of the German Economy.

India emerged as a front-runner among these countries with an increase of 635 per cent — from 3,750 in 2012 to over 27,500 skilled workers at the end of 2022.

The study, which was first published in WirtschaftsWoche magazine, said that the increase in foreign STEM professionals, with EU nations included, went up by around 190 per cent — from around 70,000 at the end of 2012 to almost 202,000 professionals at the end of 2022.

These employees — with jobs such as IT specialists, industrial engineers and scientists — contribute about 16 billion euros per year to Germany, the report said, adding that Munich, Frankfurt, and Berlin attract the highest number of foreign STEM employees.

While visiting India earlier this year, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz had said that his government wants to ease the path for information technology experts from India to obtain work visas in the European country.

A survey by Munich-based Ifo Institute released earlier this month found the country facing an acute labour crisis with more than 43 per cent of nearly 9,000 firms polled suffering from a lack of qualified workers in July — up from just over 42 per cent in April this year.

To streamline and ease rules for third-country employees, Germany has passed a new law to ease the entry of skilled professionals, which will come into force on March 1, 2024.

Indians were granted a total of 17,379 work visas last year, marking a significant increase compared to 2021, according to the Federal Foreign Office of Germany.

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