Dr. Michael Sauer in his function as a consultant in the Kosovar Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs (Photo: CIM).

Win-win for Kosovo and Germany through circular migration

Dr. Michael Sauer works as a consultant in the Kosovar Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs. His heart has been beating for Kosovo since 2005, when he had his first assignment there. He is fascinated by the dynamics of the youngest society in Europe with an average age of 25 years.

What exactly is your area of responsibility?

Placed by CIM, I advise the Minister of Labour in the Kosovo Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs on labour migration. Youth unemployment in Kosovo is 60%. That is why many young people are trying to come to Germany illegally. My task is to create legal possibilities for labour migration and to inform about it. We are preparing bilateral agreements, setting up an information centre in the ministry and developing training programmes with German partners, such as the Bavarian State Association of Building Guilds.

What exactly is it all about?

We want to reduce the shortage of trainees in the German construction industry. To this end, we place Kosovars in training in Germany in order to use the acquired knowledge to return to companies in Kosovo in the medium term. If necessary, we also offer young people support later on their way to self-employment. Such circular migration can benefit both the country of destination and the country of origin.

Kosovo's young and very dynamic society is constantly looking for ways to succeed.

Circular migration can create a win-win situation for the participating countries.

How will the level of training directly in Kosovo be strengthened in the long term?

In Kosovo, the transfer of knowledge in skilled trades has long only taken place directly from generation to generation. We want to show that a wide range of vocational training is worthwhile - for the employee, the company and the entire industry. In the future, German experts will also come to Kosovo to train trainers here and possibly also to reform the curriculum in order to raise the standard overall.

What excites you most about your tasks?

Managing labour migration always means bringing different actors together. It is important to always be able to take on different perspectives - and not always see migration as a one-way street, for example. In addition, it is currently generally very exciting to work in Kosovo. The work and life here are very multifaceted. Kosovo is the youngest country in Europe with an average age of about 25 years. This young and very dynamic society is constantly looking for ways to be successful.

The Kosovar Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs cooperates with German partners, including the Bavarian State Association of Building Guilds.

On behalf of

The Centre for International Migration and Development (CIM) is jointly run by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH and the International Placement Services (ZAV) of the German Federal Employment Agency (BA). Together, they have been providing development and labour market policy expertise since 1980. CIM places experts from the EU and ETFA countries in developing countries and emerging economies. Our main commissioning party is the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).