German for Professional Purposes - ESF-BAMF Programme

A success story: ESF-BAMF Programme is now a permanent, regular, and nationwide service
The ESF-BAMF programme was so successful as a "pilot project" for vocational language promotion in Germany that the German for professional purposes programme based on Section 45a of the Residence Act became a permanent, regular, and nationwide service in July 2016. This has gradually replaced the ESF-BAMF programme, which expired at the end of 2017. The BAMF is also the implementing body for the national service to promote the German language. An ordinance was issued that made the agencies responsible for executing the ESF-BAMF programme responsible for the national programme starting on 1 July 2016.

People from a migrant background could avail of job-related German language courses, linked to elements of continuous vocational training, and thereby improve their opportunities in the labour market. The scope of the programme ranged from classic language tuition including specialised job-related vocabulary to actual internships in companies. By meshing job-related measures to strengthen language skills with integration courses under the Residence Act, valuable new components were added to the Federal Government's basic support portfolio. The assigned education providers were required to build partnerships with local business enterprises to arrange work placements but also with a keen eye to the integration of individuals into training or employment.

From 2 June 2016, young people's access to training and the labour market has also been significantly improved by making it easier for them to combine the job-related language training elements of the ESF-BAMF programme with labour market policy measures. The previous contribution to costs on the part of employees or their employers was done away with in the cases listed in the funding guidelines.

Profile of the programme

Target group
  • Unemployed
  • Migrants, people with a foreign background
  • Young people, young adults

Benefit claimants under Book II and III of the Social Code. Asylum seekers and refugees could also qualify for support under certain conditions.

Implementation period

2015.01.01 - 2017.12.31

  • Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs
Funding priority

B: Promoting social inclusion, combating poverty and any discrimination

Additional Information

web­site of pro­gramme


Bundesamt für Migration und Flüchtlinge

Referat 322

Tel.: 0221 92426-400

Poller Kirchweg  101
51105 Köln