GERMANY – Minimum Salary Increases for EU Blue Card

By Peregrine

The German government has increased the minimum salary requirements for European Union (EU) Blue Cards, effective 1 January 2019.

Salary Thresholds

  • Regular Blue Card holders in Germany must be paid at least EUR 53,600 per year (up from EUR 52,000 in 2018).
  • Blue Card holders in shortage occupations must be paid at least EUR 41,808 per year (up from EUR 40,560 in 2018).



The Blue Card (Blaue Karte) is applicable to highly-skilled employees with a local job offer. and a salary at least two-thirds of the German pension fund contribution ceiling (Beitragsbemessungsgrenze der deutschen Rentenversicherung), which changes slightly every year.

The Blue Card regulation also applies to skilled employees in shortage occupations (‘Mangelberufe’ – scientists, mathematicians, engineers, doctors in human medicine, academic specialists in IT and communication) with an annual salary of at least 52% of the German pension fund contribution ceiling.

For shortage occupations, the labour authorities must check that the employment conditions match the local standards, and the employer must submit an official format job description.


Action Items

  • Employers of foreign nationals planning to apply for or renew an EU Blue Card in Germany in 2019, or with pending Blue Card applications for work starting in 2019, should ensure that salaries meet the 2019 minimum salary requirement.
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