Global Immigration News Round-Up

Global immigration rules are changing by the day, both in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and as a result of legislative updates across the globe.

Smith Stone Walters is here to help businesses and individuals keep on top of these developments and identify any changes that may impact your immigration goals. With this in mind, we would like to highlight the following key updates in global immigration.

Netherlands: Increased salary requirements

From 1 January 2020, Dutch Authorities will increase the salary thresholds for many categories by 3%. The changes are for applications filed from this date, with pending applications falling under the previous levels.

The threshold for key categories are set out below, with the gross figure per month listed:

  • Short-term work permit: EUR 5,132.16
  • Short-term work permit, applicants under 30: EUR 3,762.72
  • Graduates and job search permit holders, changing to a Highly Skilled Migrant: EUR 2,497
  • Blue Card: EUR 5,568
  • EU Intra-Company Transfer (ICT) Permit: EUR 4,752
  • EU Intra-Company Transfer (ICT) Permit, applicants under 30: EUR 4,752
  • Highly Skilled Migrant: EUR 4,752
  • Highly Skilled Migrants, applicants under 30: EUR 3,484

For further information about how to remain compliant with a view to these new thresholds, please contact Smith Stone Walters.

Portugal: Proposed changes to the Golden Visa

Officially initiated back in 2012 as a way to attract more investors to Portugal, the Golden Visa programme has benefitted approximately 6,500 foreign investors to date.

The Golden Visa is renowned for its flexibility and benefits, which include gaining a residency permit for families and dependants. One of the most unique features is the ability to apply for permanent residency and also citizenship after five years, without the need to reside in Portugal.

Earlier this year, the Portuguese government announced that they will be making legislative amendments to this programme, effective from January.

Now that this calendar year is coming to an end, the government have committed to ensure that the amendment goes through, which in turn will mean that investors are set to see restrictions on where they will be able to purchase property in Portugal among other limitations.

The changes will include a new required minimum value of investment in real estate which is expected to increase from the current €500,000 across Portugal and €400,000 for the Algarve. More details will be available in the upcoming weeks, for now we advise clients to stay up to date with the upcoming changes via the Portuguese embassy website.

Japan: Flexibility in work rules for foreign nationals

The Japanese government are allowing for more flexible regulations on part time work for foreign nationals that are unable to leave the country due to coronavirus travel restrictions.

While this has been introduced as a temporary measure, the government have relaxed their regulations to help support foreign nationals in Japan that have been impacted by COVID-19. In particular, those that have been in Japan for longer than expected due to strict quarantine rules and lack of flights, which has directly left many without any financial support.

The new rules will allow people with 90 day short stay permits to renew their permits and receive permission to work up to 28 hours a week, while technical trainees will be able to change their visas to a “specified activity” work permit for six months.

Furthermore, the new rules will also grant individuals on student visas the ability to work for up to 28 hours, even if they are no longer students.

Let us help you reach your global immigration goals

At Smith Stone Walters, moving people across borders is our business. Our team of immigration experts manage and support immigration moves throughout the UK, Europe and the rest of the world.

If you need advice or support in reaching your business’s global immigration goals, Smith Stone Walters would be delighted to help. Contact us today to discuss your requirements – we are immigration experts.

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