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HLG - Weekly Newsletter – 19.06.2017

Jun 19,2017

AFRICA

 

Ethiopia

 

  1. Emmanuel K. Dogbevi, ‘’Ethiopia’s online visa application – only one African country is eligible!’’, Ghana Business News, June 13th, 2017
  • Ethiopia on June 12, 2017 announced an online visa application process to ease visa processes to travellers to that country, but only one African country out of the 54, is eligible to use the platform with two others exempt, because these two countries have visa exempt agreements with Ethiopia.
  • Out of the 39 countries eligible to apply for visa online, including North Korea, some Western and Latin American countries, the only African country eligible to apply for an evisa is South Africa. The other two African countries on the list, Kenya and Djibouti, have visa exempt deals with Ethiopia.
  • In a press release issued Tuesday June 13, 2017 and copied to ghanabusinessnews.com, the Ethiopian Immigration and Nationality Affairs main Department says it has in collaboration with the country’s airline, Ethiopian Airlines, finalized preparations of the initial phase to commence an evisa service for international visitors to Ethiopia effective June 12, 2017

 

 

Kenya

 

  1. Muthoki Mumo, ‘’Kenya grants SA visitors 90-day visa free stay’’, Business Daily, June 13th, 2017
  • Nairobi has granted South Africans additional time to visit Kenya without visas, pointing to a thawing of diplomatic relations between the two nations.
  • Interior secretary Joseph Nkaissery says in a legal notice published last Friday that South Africans can now visit and stay in Kenya without a visa for up to three months, up from the previous 30 days.
  • The notice says South African “civil servants, holders of diplomatic, official or ordinary passports” can visit Kenya without visas “for a period exceeding (sic) ninety (90) days”. The Ministry of Interior later clarified that there was an error in the notice, and that it ought to have read a period “not exceeding ninety (90) days”.

 

Nigeria

 

  1. Matthew Amiot, “Visa on arrival for foreign investors to ease trading in Nigeria for UAE businesses”, CPI Financial, June 13th, 2017
  • According to Muhammad Babandede, the ComptrollerGeneral of the NIS, the new system is part of the resolution of the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council (PEBEC) to create a favourable environment to attract foreign investors into the economy. The automated visa application and processing services at all entry points will ensure that all genuine requests for Visa on Arrival facility from any part of the world including the GCC region are processed and issued within 48 hours (two working days).
  • The new system will require business owners, entrepreneurs and travellers to register with the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) online and provide essential travel details, after which a letter of approval may or may not be issued, and the visa can be collected on arrival. The NIS has also deployed a dedicated email address

 

 

AMERICA

 

Antigua

 

  1. Dmytro Makarov, ‘’Antigua and Barbuda strengthen ties and celebrate success at Caribbean Week”, eTurbo News, June 12th, 2017
  • Antigua and Barbuda is celebrating Caribbean-American Heritage Month in the US and Caribbean week with a strong presence and performance at this annual conference from June 4 -9, 2017.
  • Caribbean Week is the largest, most engaging regional tourism activity in the greater New York and US market, and typically attracts thousands of participants that results in extensive media coverage of the various events at a local, national, and international audiences that reaches millions.
  • Now in its 44th year, the week-long event, organized by the CTO (Caribbean Tourism Organization) showcases the sights, sounds, colors, culture and unique experiences of the Caribbean. It is a unique platform to interact with Caribbean government and tourism officials, the media, investors and stakeholders, particularly in combining business sessions and consumer-oriented events.

 

 

Canada

 

  1. ‘’Global Talent Stream’’, IRCC, June 12th, 2017
  • The Global Talent Stream of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program is a program that provides innovative firms in Canada with a faster way to hire highly skilled foreign talent when Canadians or permanent residents are not available.
  • The Global Talent Stream is designed to help innovative companies recruit the highly specialized and skilled global talent they need to expand by providing faster and more predictable application processing.
  • The Global Talent Stream contributes to economic growth in Canada by ensuring that Canadians and permanent residents continue to have the first opportunity at available jobs, while ensuring Canadian businesses have the skilled workforce they need.

 

  1. Heather Kelly, ‘’Canada wants to be the next Silicon Valley’’, CNN Tech, June 14th, 2017
  • The U.S. government is making it more difficult for companies to quickly hire talent from other countries, with a cap on expedited visas for highly skilled workers and a pending plan to overhaul the H-1B visa program. Meanwhile, Canada is testing new, speedier visas.
  • On Monday, the Canadian government started its new program to issue work permits and temporary resident visas in two weeks instead of the usual year. The two-year pilot, part of a Global Skills program first announced last year, will be available to "innovative" companies seeking highly skilled workers.
  • It's the latest attempt by Canada to lure tech business north of the border. It's also experimenting with looser regulations, tax breaks and rebranding. Later this year, Ontario will launch an ad campaign targeting Silicon Valley decision makers and workers.

 

Cayman Islands

 

  1. Brent Fuller, “Residency hearings to start next week”, Cayman Compass, June 15th, 2017
  • A government-appointed board will begin considering a backlog of between 900 and 1,000 permanent residence applications sometime next week, according to the Ministry of Immigration.
  • The requests from non-Caymanian residents to remain here for the rest of their life have not been heard since at least January 2015 due to legal uncertainties surrounding certain criteria government had set for applicants.
  • The previous Progressives-led administration approved changes to the British territory’s Immigration Law that took effect Oct. 26, 2013. The changes included a revamped permanent residence scheme that made it harder for individuals to qualify.

 

 

Saint Lucia

 

  1. ‘’Saint Lucia Citizenship by Investment: Leading the way’’, Caribbean News Now, June 12th, 2017
  • Last week Prime Minister Allen Chastanet dispelled some of the myths about the country’s programme. He confirmed that individuals naturalized through the country’s CIP have the same rights as Saint Lucia-born citizens. He also said that citizenship is transferable to both wives and children, Investment Migration Insider reported.
  • “If you obtain citizenship through the CIP and later get married, your spouse can apply for citizenship,” he told a conference in Geneva. “If you obtain citizenship through the CIP and later have children, your descendants can apply for citizenship as well.”

 

Panama

 

  1. Mario J. Penton, “Panama offers stranded Cuban migrants multiple entry visas if they return to island”, Miami Herald, June 18th, 2017
  • The Panamanian government has a proposal for a group of Cubans stranded in that country: return voluntarily to the island, become self-employed entrepreneurs known as cuentapropistas and, in exchange, obtain multiple entry visas and even start-up capital — still to be determined — for investment purposes.
  • Under the proposal, Panama would grant a multiple-entry visa to the future entrepreneurs so they could purchase products from Panamanian markets needed for their businesses. It is not a crazy proposition, considering that so far this year about 11,900 Cubans have entered the country with stamped visas that allows for multiple entries for tourism and business purposes.

 

 

United States

 

  1. Jess Bravin, ‘’Supreme Court Strikes Down Gender-Based Immigration Law’’ Wall Street Journal, June 12th, 2017
  • The Supreme Court Monday struck down an immigration law that treated unmarried mothers better than unmarried fathers, ruling that “stunningly anachronistic” stereotypes about the sexes couldn’t justify a preference for women over men.
  • At issue is how long an unmarried American citizen has to have been present in the U.S. to confer citizenship on a child born overseas when the other parent is an alien. Currently, the period is a year for an unmarried American mother but five years for an unmarried American father.

 

ASIA

 

Indonesia

 

  1. ‘’Indonesia, Norway waive visa requirements for diplomatic and service passports’’, The Jakarta Post, June 14th, 2017
  • Indonesia and Norway have agreed to waive visa requirements for diplomatic and service passports, according to a statement from the Foreign Ministry.
  • Foreign Minister Retno LP Marsudi and her Norwegian counterpart Borge Brende signed the agreement in Oslo on Monday, during the former's working visit to the Norwegian capital.
  • "After negotiations over the past two years, Indonesia and Norway have successfully signed a visa-free cooperation for holders of diplomatic and service passports," Retno said, as quoted by Antara news agency.
  • The minister underlined that the signing of the visa-free cooperation is a step forward for both governments in strengthening bilateral relations between Indonesia and Norway.

 

 

Iran

 

  1. ‘’Iran seeks to broaden travel ties with East Asia’’, Tehran Times, June 14th, 2017
  • Iran is contemplating easing visa restrictions for tourist trips to Japan, South Korea, and China,” Tasnim quoted Zahra Ahmadipour as saying on Wednesday.
  • Ahmadipour, who presides over the Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts Organization, said that delegations from the aforementioned countries are scheduled to visit Iran in order to negotiate modalities of the tourism enhancement.
  • “We will do our best to [persuade Japan to] facilitate its visa regime for Iranian nationals,” Ahmadipour said, adding that Iran should also try to attract more Japanese tourists to catch up with other countries frequented by the Japanese.

 

 

EUROPE

 

Czech Republic

 

  1. ‘’ČR, Japan may sign working holiday agreement for young’’, Prague Daily Monitor, June 15th, 2017
  • Prague, June 14 (CTK) The Czech Republic and Japan could sign an agreement allowing young people from both countries to travel to the other one within the "working holiday," according a proposal the government supported at its meeting on Wednesday.
  • During their stay, the young people are to be able to work and earn money to cover the costs of their trips.
  • The Czech Republic has signed similar agreements with Canada, New Zealand, South Korea, Israel and Chile.

 

 

Germany

 

  1. Chase Winter, ‘’Sharp rise in Britons seeking German passports as Brexit looms’’, Deutsche Welle, June 13th, 2017
  • The number of Britons seeking German citizenship nearly quadrupled last year. The number is expected to rise as Brexit nears.
  • The number of Britons receiving German citizenship soared last year as the British voted to leave the European Union, Germany's Federal Statistic Office said on Tuesday. In all, 2,865 Britons were granted German citizenship in 2016 - a 361 percent increase over the previous year.
  • "A connection with Brexit is obvious," the statistic office said, noting it was the highest ever recorded number for British citizens.
  • The number of Britons seeking German citizenship may rise further this year as the process takes time and people calculate the benefits of a German passport before Britain is scheduled to leave the bloc in 2019.

 

 

Romania

 

  1. Ovidiu Posirca, ‘’US ambassador Klemm: Some 90 percent of Romanians who apply for a visa receive it’’, Business Review, June 14th, 2017
  • The US ambassador to Romania, Hans Klemm, said that president Klaus Iohannis spoke with his US counterpart Donald Trump about the inclusion of Romania in the Visa Waiver program.
  • “Regarding the visa issue, it was discussed between the two presidents. Immigration is a very sensitive topic in the United States as it is in many countries around the world. I think if there is an opportunity to make adjustments to the Visa Waiver program, it will be a consequence of comprehensive immigration reform. It’s something that the president has discussed, it is not currently on the agenda of the US Congress, but perhaps it will be in the coming years.
  • At the same time, I would like to emphasize that some 90 percent of Romanians who apply for a visa are issued a visa and if you are the established owner of a business, you qualify for a visa. I am very confident that you will get that visa and you will be able to travel to the US and to business,” said Klemm during the Country Focus Community Forum, the 2-day event organized by Business Review magazine.

 

 

Ukraine

 

  1. Nyura N. Berg, ‘’Ukraine's Visa Free Travel to the EU: At What Price Does It Come?’’, Sputnik News, June 13th, 2017
  • Ukraine is currently elated at having been granted visa-free travel throughout the European Union. However, observers are asking if there are unseen costs to the deal.
  • Short-term visa-free travel to Europe's Schengen Area was granted to Ukrainians Sunday. In accordance with the agreement, they are now able to travel to the countries of the Schengen Area for 90 days out of every 180 for tourist, business or family purposes, although they have no right to work or study in the EU member states.
  • However, Brussels reserves the right to suspend the visa-free arrangement if security or illegal migration problems emerge.

 

 

United Kingdom

 

  1. Nina Adam & Bertrand Benoit , ‘’As Brexit Looms, Britons Seek Citizenship of Other EU Countries’’, The Wall Street Journal, June 13th, 2017
  • Figures released on Tuesday showed 2,865 British citizens had obtained German citizenship in 2016—up from 622 in 2015 and the highest number since Germany began collecting the data in 1950. The 2016 figure represented just under 3% of all British citizens living in Germany. While the Federal Statistical Office, which published the data, doesn’t record applicants’ motivations, it said “a connection to Brexit appears obvious.”
  • The status of British expatriates scattered across the EU—and that of other EU citizens living in Britain—is one key issue to be negotiated in the two-year divorce process between the U.K. and the bloc, but many are taking no chances. A citizen of any member state is allowed to travel, live and work anywhere in the bloc.
  • For decades, German law didn’t recognize multiple citizenships, forcing applicants to relinquish their former nationality upon becoming German. But reforms have watered down this requirement over the years and citizens from other EU countries can now retain their original passports, lowering the hurdle for many would-be applicants.

 

  1. ‘’Brexit: What is at stake in EU-UK talks?’’, BBC News, June 13th, 2017
  • The European Commission says it will "seek to guarantee the rights of both EU citizens in the UK and UK citizens in the EU, as well as their families (regardless of nationality)". It says "this includes rights that will only enter into effect in the future, such as old-age pensions".
  • About 3.2 million non-British EU citizens live in the UK. Some 1.2 million UK nationals live in the other 27 EU member states.
  • The UK government agrees that protecting citizens' rights needs to be tackled early in the talks. But it has resisted calls to give unilateral guarantees to EU citizens living in the UK.

 

 

OCEANIA

 

Australia

 

  1. ‘’Citizenship changes to face parliament’’, The Australian, June 11th, 2017
  • The federal government will unveil details of its planned changes to make it tougher to get Australian citizenship this week.
  • Immigration Minister Peter Dutton will introduce to parliament legislation that extends permanent residency from one year to four before people can apply for citizenship, toughens English language competencies, introduces a values test, and requires people to demonstrate they have integrated into Australian society.
  • "It may mean that they can remain on a permanent visa and become an Australian citizen at some other point in time when they can prove good character, but if they have been involved in violence, gang violence, terrorist-related activities, whatever it might be, then they won't be getting Australian citizenship," Mr Dutton said.

 

  1. Richard Whitten, ‘’Australian migration figures drop in April 2017’’, Finder, June 13th, 2017
  • Total migration in April is down compared to March, though the top 10 source countries remain the same.
  • The top countries driving Australian migration in April were the same as in the previous month. Although the larger sources of migration registered small declines, countries like the United Kingdom, New Zealand, the Philippines and South Africa saw small increases.
  • It is too soon to call April's small migration decline a trend and it may have no connection to the visa changes. But viewed year-on-year, April's migration numbers show a drop compared to April 2016.

 

New Zealand

 

  1. ‘’Immigration on NZ's terms’’, Otago Daily Times, June 14th, 2017
  • Generally, most New Zealanders have been in favour of immigration. After all, everyone came from immigrant stock at one time or another, beginning with the great Polynesian sea voyages several centuries ago.
  • These days, however, ambivalence, even opposition, grows. Older New Zealanders in particular are likely to question some immigration. There are fears of the country being swamped by different cultures, values and ways of life, and even that domestic terrorism could emerge.
  • It is a privilege to live and work in this country and New Zealand has the right to pick and choose its residents. A debate about immigration is welcome and appropriate, and some of the devil will be in the complex detail. Voters should be wary of any politicians exploiting underlying anxieties through proclaiming simplistic solutions.

 

  1. Stacey Kirk, “Migrants coming into New Zealand at a faster rate of knots compared to other countries: figures”, Stuff, June 15th, 2017
  • Migrants are piling into New Zealand at nearly twice the rate than in Australia and more than three times the rate of the UK, figures suggest.
  • "I think that shows that while immigration has always been important to New Zealand and always will be, we're experiencing a rate of population growth that our infrastructure cannot keep up with and it's time to take a breather."
  • Labour unveiled its policy earlier in the week, vowing to cut immigration by up to 30,000, mostly by targeting international students it said were targeting low-value training courses in New Zealand as a means of gaining an easier route to residency.

 

 

 

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