Foreigners who wish to become German nationals after fulfilling the criteria will no longer have to renounce their old nationality after the new German government announced its intention to allow dual nationality.
Outlining their plans on the government of Germany, the coalition of the center-left Social Democratic Party, the Green Party of the Greens and the pro-business Free Democratic Party announced that they planned to drop the demand for renounce the old nationality to become a German citizen.
“We want a new start in the migration and integration policy as it should be for a modern immigration country“, We read in the 177-page coalition agreement between the three parties.
Under current German citizenship law, those who meet the criteria to become German nationals must renounce their former citizenship. Only applicants for German nationality who:
- Are born with dual nationality, i.e. to a German parent and a non-German parent
- You are a citizen of the EU or Switzerland
- Are citizens of a country that does not allow its citizens to renounce citizenship.
At the same time, those who would be allowed to retain their former nationality would also face difficulties if they renounced it, that is, by losing assets, paying heavy fines or losing an annual income. ‘at least € 10,225, reports SchengenVisaInfo.com.
Immigrants to the country may also have to wait less time to apply for German citizenship, as the new government is also considering the possibility of allowing them to apply for citizenship after only five years in the country.
Until now, for a foreigner to apply for German citizenship, he had to live in the country for at least eight years with a permanent residence permit. This period can only be reduced to seven years if the foreigner takes a German language integration course at a community college, called in German Volkshochsschule.
>> How to obtain German nationality?
The agreement between the three coalition parties also provides for speeding up and simplifying asylum and residence requests.
Commenting on the plan, Green Party MP Luise Amtsberg told DW that the new government was set to end the restrictive asylum policy of the past few years by allowing people already in Germany to “”solidify their residence, find work, have access to the language, without discernment. “
“These are all key intersections that are relevant for a modern immigration country and offer a paradigm shift,” she said.
The Christian Democrats (CDU), who have been in power for 16 years now, remain skeptical of the project and have supported tougher immigration laws.
If the new government’s plan becomes reality, the number of foreigners acquiring German citizenship will increase. Based on data published by the German Federal Statistical Office Destatis, 109,880 foreigners obtained German citizenship in 2020, despite all the challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic.
While 28,305 nationals of other EU countries obtained German citizenship in 2020, the main EU countries, whose citizens became German citizens in the same year, are Romania – 5,930, Poland – 5,000, Italy – 4,075, Greece – 2,650 and Bulgaria – 2,040.