The Ministry of Home Affairs has published a note to the Prefectural authorities recommending measures to expedite applications for Talent Passport and Intra-Company Transfer (ICT) residence permits.
FRANCE: Measures to Facilitate Talent Passport Applications
UNITED STATES: Dramatic Increases to Visa Issuance Fees for Australian Nationals
Effective 23 December 2019, Australian citizens applying for certain nonimmigrant visa categories (L-1, L-2, E-1, E-2, H-1B, and H-4 visas) face drastically higher visa issuance fees. This is in addition to the standard visa application (MRV) fees that all nationalities must pay.
AUSTRALIA: The New ‘Agricultural Visa’ – Horticulture Industry Labor Agreement
The Department of Immigration has announced that a new Labor Agreement template for the Horticulture Industry will be available from 1 January 2020.
IRELAND: Upcoming Changes to the Employment Permits System
The Minister for Business, Enterprise & Innovation has announced changes to the employment permits system, which become effective 1 January 2020, to address immediate labor shortages in key sectors such as hospitality, construction, health and road haulage.
NETHERLANDS: New Online Notification Portal for Temporary Postings Starting 1 March 2020
Effective 1 March 2020, employers in the EEA (EU Member States plus Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) or Switzerland sending their employees to work temporarily in the Netherlands must submit a notification of the posting via a new online portal. The portal will be open from 1 February to notify postings that begin on or after 1 March.
EUROPEAN UNION: Reminder of Upcoming Schengen Visa Code Amendments
The amended Schengen visa code will come into effect on 2 February 2020. Changes include more flexible procedures, longer visa validities, and fees.
PHILIPPINES: All ACR I-Card Holding Foreign Nationals to Report to Immigration By 29 February 2020
29 February 2020 is the deadline for all registered foreign nationals in the Philippines to report to the immigration office. The Annual Report (“AR”) 2020 period begins on 1 January 2020.
BREXIT: Majority Conservative Government Expected to Pass Withdrawal Agreement Bill
In the 12 December 2019 United Kingdom general election, the electorate gave the Conservative party a substantial majority. This makes it almost certain that the Withdrawal Agreement Bill will be passed by parliament (although it is not certain that this can be achieved by 31 January 2020 without a further extension) and all but eliminates the risk of a cliff-edge no-deal Brexit with no transition period.
SINGAPORE: Lower Dependency Ratio Ceiling in 2020
Effective 1 January 2020, the Dependency Ratio Ceiling (DRC) and S Pass Sub-DRC for companies in the services sector will be lowered. The DRC is the percentage of foreign workers (Work Permit and S Pass holders) that a company can hire.
SOUTH KOREA: Stricter Policy for Illegal Stay
The Korean National Assembly is debating tougher penalties for the employers of illegal residents. For those voluntarily reporting illegal residence by 28 February 2020, penalties will be reduced or exempted.
AUSTRALIA: Traffic Light Bulletin – Skilled Migration List Review
Following consultations with various stakeholders, including Newland Chase Australia (read our 28 November blog post here), the Department of Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business has released its Traffic Light Bulletin outlining its proposed changes to Immigration's skilled occupation lists.
CZECHIA: New Appointment Booking Lottery at New Delhi Consulate Allows Only 33 Applications
The Czech embassy in New Delhi, India, has implemented a new appointment booking system for nationals of India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka and the Maldives applying for employee cards. Under this system, only 33 employee card applications will be accepted between January and March 2020.
SAUDI ARABIA: Ministry of Labor Cancels Yellow Nitaqat Band
Effective 26 January 2020, the Ministry of Labor and Social Development (MLSD) has announced it will cancel the yellow band in its Saudization programme, Nitaqat. Companies currently in the yellow band will be moved into the red band and will become non-compliant unless they improve their Nitaqat rating.
RUSSIA: Reminder - Upcoming Deadline for Employers to Confirm Measles Vaccination of All Foreign Employees [UPDATED]
Employers engaging foreign labor in Russia have until 31 December 2019 to confirm the vaccination against measles of all the foreign nationals they currently employ.
FRANCE: Decree to Extend Rights of Posted Workers from July 2020
Ministerial order 2019-116 of 20 February 2019, which will come into effect on 30 July 2020, transposes into French law European Directive 2018/957 of 28 June 2018, extending the employment rights of posted (seconded) workers.
SWITZERLAND: Reminder that Job Advertisement Threshold to Change from January 2020
Effective 1 January 2020, employers wishing to hire foreign nationals for occupations with an unemployment rate of 5% or above will have to test the Swiss labor market by advertising. The threshold has been 8% since the requirement was introduced in July 2018.
UNITED STATES: Electronic Registration Required for Upcoming H-1B Cap Season
US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has announced that it will implement its new electronic registration process for H-1B applications for the upcoming H-1B lottery.
ARGENTINA: Police Clearance Certificates Required for Certain Visas
Effective immediately, holders of 30-day technical or professional visas valid for 30 days who apply to renew the visa for a sixth time (i.e. beyond six months’ continuous stay in Argentina) must submit police clearance certificates (PCCs) from their country of origin and/or all countries where they have lived during the previous three years.
KUWAIT: New Business Visit Visa Regulations Extended to All Nationalities
In an attempt to crack down on forged degree certificates submitted in support of business (commercial) visit visa applications, the Kuwait Ministry of Interior has introduced new regulations for all nationalities.
CANADA: Biometrics Now Required for Certain In-Canada Applications
Effective 3 December 2019, applicants within Canada for work permit, study permit and visa extensions, as well as for permanent residence, must give their biometrics (fingerprints and photo) at a designated Service Canada location.
SOUTH KOREA: Visa Invitations and Extensions Limited for Companies with Unpaid Tax
Effective immediately, the Korean immigration authorities have introduced a new regulation rejecting applications for visa issuance confirmation numbers (VICN) and Alien Registration Card (ARC) extensions if the inviting company has any amount of arrears for any type of tax.
NETHERLANDS: New Minimum Salary Levels for 2020
The Dutch immigration authorities (IND) have announced new minimum salary levels for knowledge migrant workers (aka Highly Skilled Migrants), graduates and Blue Card applicants coming to the Netherlands.
MALAYSIA: MDEC Foreign Knowledge Worker Projection for 2020 Opens 3 December 2019
MSC/ICT status companies who are registered with the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) can start to apply for their 2020 Foreign Knowledge Worker (FKW) projection for Employment Passes from 3 December 2019.