KN Global immigration update - May 2018

31 May 2018

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May 2018

In these global immigration updates, we provide brief details on key changes to immigration rules in global jurisdictions.

Please note that all immigration rules are subject to change and whilst correct at the time of publication, they should not be relied upon as legal advice or a statement of accuracy at a later date.


European union - Consular protection introduced for eu citizens


EU citizens in need of emergency assistance whilst travelling outside the EU may now seek assistance from the embassy or consulate of any other EU member state.

EU Directive 2015/37 became effective as of 1 May 2018 and dictates that when an EU citizen is travelling or living in a country outside of the EU and the country does not contain an embassy or consulate from the country that they are a citizen of, such a citizen will be considered “unrepresented” and they are entitled to seek help from the embassy or consulate of any other EU member state.   

Unrepresented EU citizens are entitled to receive the same level of consular protection as nationals of that country. The assistance sought may include:

  • Arrest or detention;
  • Being a victim of crime;
  • A serious accident or serious illness;
  • Death;
  • Relief and repatriation in case of an emergency; and
  • A need for emergency travel documents as provided for in Decision.

Unrepresented EU citizens must prove their EU citizenship (e.g. passport, national identity card or similar document) in order to receive assistance.

Czech Republic - EU Blue Card Minimum Salary Increased


From 1 May, the minimum monthly salary requirement necessary for an EU Blue Card in Czech Republic increased from CZK 39,700 to CZK 44,256.  The salary threshold is determined annually by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs and set at 1.5x of the average gross monthly salary.

The EU Blue Card allows high-skilled non-EU citizens to work and live in any country within the European Union, excluding Denmark, Ireland and the United Kingdom, countries which are not subject to the scheme.

Russia – Changes to address registration requirement during FIFA World Cup 2018


Further to the recent announcement of additional security measures for the 2018 World Cup (noted in our April 2018 update), Russian authorities have relaxed the address registration requirement that was previously confirmed.  Effective between 25 May until 25 July, foreign nationals arriving in Kaliningrad, Kazan, Moscow, Nizhny Novgorod, Rostov, St. Petersburg, Samara, Saransk, Sochi, Volgograd or Yekaterinburg will now have up to three days after arrival in the specified cities to register their address.  Previously the timeframe was 24 hours.

Those staying in hotels, hospitals and similar institutions must still complete their registration within 24 hours of arrival.



Hong Kong – New technology visa pilot scheme announced


The Hong Kong authorities have announced a new employment visa called the Technology Talent Admission Scheme (TechTAS). The TechTAS visa will initially be implemented as a three year pilot scheme and will allow foreign and mainland Chinese professionals to undertake development and research work. The intention of the programme is to streamline the process of foreign nationals in this sector entering Hong Kong.

In order for a company to qualify under this new programme to hire foreign nationals, the company must be a participant in either of the following:

  • Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corporation; or
  • Hong Kong Cyberport Management Company Limited.

As well as this, in order to be eligible for the visa, the foreign national must be looking to work in the following areas:

  • Artificial intelligence;
  • Cyber security robotics;
  • Data analytics;
  • Financial technologies;
  • Material science; and
  • Biotechnology.

The applicant must have at least one year of work experience in their technological field, however if they have a Masters or Doctoral degree, the applicant does not need to have work experience.

Hong Kong - Same-sex dependant visas issued further to landmark ruling


Further to a decision by the Court of Appeal in Hong Kong that authorities should not have denied a visa to a British national seeking dependent status on the basis of a same-sex partnership, foreign national same-sex spouses of Hong Kong residents can now obtain visas equivalent of dependant visas.  

It is likely that those applying for a visa based on a same-sex relationship would need to provide a marriage certificate as part of the application process although on a discretionary basis the immigration authorities are considering applications to those in a civil partnership with a Hong Kong resident if sufficient evident is provided that the relationship is genuine.  The Court of Appeal ruling has been appealed to the Supreme Court in Hong Kong therefore the current situation may be subject to change in the future depending on the outcome of this decision.


Middle East

UAE – Long-term resident visas to become available for investors and entrepreneurs


The UAE Government has announced that they will launch a new long-term residency visa for up to 10 years to investors and individuals deemed to have “exceptional talent”. 

Investors and entrepreneurs, as well as specialist professionals in scientific, technical, medical and research fields will receive UAE residency visas for up to 10 years. The families of those categories of migrants may also be eligible for visas on the same terms. The Government will also be introducing a new student visa scheme which will grant 5 year visas as standard and 10 year visas to students who are deemed “exceptional”.


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