Latest updates in global

This week, the Global Immigration Team at Smith Stone Walters would like to highlight the following recent updates from Malaysia, Switzerland and Canada.

Malaysia: Employment Pass 2022 quota

The Expatriates Service Division (ESD) has announced that applications for 2022 quota projection will close on 2 December 2022.

ESD Companies which need to submit Employment Pass (EP) and/or Professional Visit Pass (PVP) applications in 2022 must submit the quota application by 2 December 2022 and must submit EP/PVP applications by 31 December 2022 in order to use the 2022 quota. The 2022 quota cannot be carried into 2023.

Applications have already closed for MSC and ICT status companies registered with MDEC.

Applications for 2023 quota projection are already open.

Switzerland: 2023 work permit quotas

The Federal Council has announced that work permit quotas will remain unchanged for applications submitted in 2023.

Quotas are issued annually for long-term B permits and short-term L permits for workers from non-EU/EFTA countries and from the UK, and quarterly for service providers and transferees from the EU/EFTA.  Quotas do not apply to L permits valid for up to four months, renewals or changes of status.

As we previously reported, the Federal Council has decided to restrict access to the Swiss labour market for Croatian nationals in 2023.

The 2023 quotas are as follows:

  • 4000 short-term L permits for non-EU/EFTA nationals;
  • 4500 long-term B permits for non-EU/EFTA nationals;
  • 3000 short-term L permits for service providers and transferees based in the EU/EFTA;
  • 500 long-term B permits for service providers and transferees based in the EU/EFTA;
  • 1400 short-term L permits for UK nationals;
  • 2100 long-term B permits for UK nationals;
  • 1007 short-term L permits for Croatian nationals;
  • 1150 long-term B permits for Croatian nationals.

Switzerland and the United Kingdom

The UK and Switzerland have agreed a three-year extension to the Services Mobility Agreement (SMA).

The agreement, in force since the beginning of 2021, allows service suppliers, such as management consultants, IT experts or engineers, to continue travelling freely between Switzerland and the UK and work for up to 90 days per year, without the need for visas, economic interest tests, work permits, evidence of language skills or lengthy processing times.

Canada: Working hours limit temporarily lifted for international students

The Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has temporarily lifted the working hour limit for international students in Canada.

From 15 November 2022 until 31 December 2023, the 20-hours per week limit will no longer apply and eligible international students will be able to work full-time or as many hours as they wish during term time. Previously, international students were only permitted to work full-time during term breaks.

This one-time measure has been introduced to help tackle ongoing labour shortages, particularly in sectors such as hospitality and retail, where a high number of positions are typically held by students. It is estimated that over 500,000 students already in Canada could benefit from the policy, and employers will have access to a new pool of labour.

The government is expected to review the impact of the temporary policy on Canada’s labour shortages to determine if it should be made permanent.

Expert advice on global immigration

If you need support with any aspect of worldwide immigration, Smith Stone Walters is here to help.

To speak to a member of our Global Immigration team, please contact us today.

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