Immigration: news of the month - June 2024

Immigration: news of the month - June 2024

What's new in terms of immigration this month? Will your project be affected?  To help you adapt your global mobility projects to the new standards, here is a little round-up of the main changes of June.



Changes to Work Permits



A significant amount of changes to the work permit system have just been implemented in Kuwait.

Firstly, the work permit will no longer distinguish local from foreign workers. Secondly, processing fees have been increased from 175 KWD to 325 KWD, with exceptions to be granted on a case-by-case basis at the time of payment. In addition, foreign workers who wish to change employer during the first three years of their work permit will now be able to do so for a transfer fee of 300 KWD. Previously, transfers were prohibited for the first 6 months, conditional on payment of the fee between 6 months and one year, and free after one year. Although the separate framework for transfers represents a cost that could affect budgets and mobility, overall, these measures offer greater flexibility.





Electronic Travel Authorization Introduced




From August 1, 2024, visa-exempt nationals will need an electronic travel authorization to enter Israel for short-term business, tourist or other non-professional or non-medical trips and visits.

To obtain the authorization, an online application must be submitted at least 72 hours before entry, and the system will open on July 1. The decision will be issued immediately by e-mail, and the authorization will allow multiple entries of up to 90 days each, and will be valid for up to two years or until the expiry of the traveler's passport, whichever comes first. It may be revoked by the authorities for immigration and security reasons, and the traveler will be informed by e-mail. Border authorities retain the discretionary power to refuse entry despite visa approval.

Until July 31, the system will be free of charge, and the application fee will be 25 NIS from August 1.





New Pilot Program Enabling Nationals of Selected Countries to Check their Passports Digitally




The Freya application will enable workers and students from 22 countries to have their passports identified and presented online. As soon as an online application for a work or study permit is submitted, the Swedish Migration Agency will launch the new procedure. An e-mail containing a personalized link to the service is sent, it is valid for one week.

All in all, the service will save time and money for some 19,000 workers and 5,000 students every year.





Audits of Employers Applying for Long-Stay Visa Extensions 




Immigration visits - in other words, on-site and in-person inspections - are carried out by the Immigration Office of the One Stop Service Center on employers who have applied for a long-stay visa extension beyond the first year. Interviews are held with the employee concerned, a human resources employee or any other company representative able to answer questions, provide information and documents relating to the company and the job, and the representative who helped obtain the visa.

In the event of non-compliance, employers will have their foreign employees' visas cancelled, non-renewed, and their ability to sponsor visas for future hires restricted.



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