Companies in provincial Germany are hoping the euro crisis will help them attract desperately needed skilled workers from southern Europe, experts said.
Dirk Luerssen, manager of a provincial German economic development initiative, told Der Spiegel efforts are under way to recruit young people from Spain and Portugal where unemployment is high.
Luerssen said metal-processing businesses and construction contractors have many orders that they can't fill without additional workers.
Regional German companies are looking for engineers and other graduates we well as bricklayers, electricians, welders and caregivers, said Norbert Czerwinski, a human resource development expert in Mannheim, Germany.
"Almost all industries, especially small and midsized companies, are desperate for new employees and trainers," he said.
To raise awareness of the labor shortage, Germany industry representatives and politicians have been giving talks at schools and universities in Barcelona and the northern Portuguese city of Porto.
In May, the number of Spaniards, Greeks, Portuguese and Italians working in Germany increased by some 28,000, a rise of 6.5 percent, to a high of roughly half a million.