- German cabinet approves citizenship reforms: dual citizenship, shorter application time, and eased eligibility for non-Germans.
- Integration and language skills crucial for obtaining citizenship in three years.
- Dual citizenship now open to non-EU citizens; residency requirements and parental eligibility revised.
The German cabinet has approved new citizenship reforms that allow for dual citizenship, streamline the naturalization process, and reduce the time required to apply from eight to three years. Interior Minister Nancy Faeser highlighted the significance of these reforms, aiming to acknowledge a modern Germany and encourage integration. If passed by the German Bundestag, individuals demonstrating strong integration and advanced German language skills could attain citizenship in just three years. The approval date for the Bundestag vote has not been announced yet, but it’s likely to take place after the summer recess on September 5.
These reforms have gained support from pro-immigration activists, as they would facilitate the path to citizenship for non-Germans in the country. The intention is to retain long-term residents and attract new workers by granting them democratic rights upon arrival. The new law also reduces the residency requirement for migrants to apply for a German passport from eight to five years, with exceptions for those who display good German skills, voluntary work, or notable occupational achievements.
Additionally, non-EU citizens will be allowed to hold dual citizenship alongside their new German passport, extending this privilege beyond just EU citizens. The reforms also address citizenship eligibility for individuals born to foreign parents, requiring only one parent to have legally resided in Germany for five years instead of eight.
While the reforms are welcomed, concerns about potentially longer application queues arise if the bill is approved by the German parliament.