Immigration Updates – 22nd of April

Contributor(s): Daniel King
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    General Updates

    France

    Effective 1 May 2022, the national minimum monthly wage (SMIC) will increase by 2.65% to EUR 1645.58.

    The SMIC is the minimum legal salary for all workers in France, and it affects the minimum salary thresholds for some types of work permit, including:

    • Talent Passport– Employee on Assignment: Gross annual pay of at least 1.8 times the statutory national minimum wage (SMIC), i.e., EUR 35,544.53 per year (previously EUR 34,627.32).
    • Talent Passport – Qualified Employee/Employee of an Innovative Company: Gross annual pay of at least twice the statutory national minimum wage (SMIC), i.e., EUR 39,493.92 per year (previously EUR 38,474.80).

    The salary threshold for the “EU Blue Card” version of the Talent Passport, for highly skilled employees, is not calculated using the SMIC, but is 1.5 times the average annual gross salary set by decree, which equals €53,836.50 as of 1 January 2022.

    Russia

    The Russian government has submitted a draft law that amends procedures and requirements for Highly Qualified Specialists (HQS).

    The current version of the draft law, which, if approved, would take effect 1 September 2022, includes the following key changes:

    • The minimum salary for HQS is raised from RUB 167,000 per month to RUB 750,000 per month.
      • The reduced minimum salary requirement for certain employers is not amended.
    • Applicants can submit a copy of their employment contract, certified by their employer, rather than an original.
    • Applicants are no longer required to undergo migration registration.
    • HQS employees and their dependents are able to obtain an indefinite permanent residence permit (not dependent on work authorization) if they have been employed and lived in Russia for two years on the basis of an HQS permanent residence permit linked to their work permit.

    Employers who fail to submit accurate information on the taxable income of HQS employees within six months of a reporting deadline can be prohibited from hiring HQS for up to two years.

    • Those who receive an HQS work permit must collect the permit within 30 days after entering Russia. If the HQS is in Russia during processing, they must collect the work permit within 30 days of receiving an approval notice.

    COVID-19 Updates

    Belgium

    • Effective 16 April 2022, the following regions are newly assigned a dark red colour code:
      • Spain: Andalusia
      • France: Saint Martin
    • The full list of colour codes for the EU countries and regions is here.
    • Third countries on the white list:
      • Bahrain, Chile, China (dark red), Colombia, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Kuwait, Macau, New Zealand, Peru, Qatar, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Taiwan, United Arab Emirates, Uruguay.
    • All other third countries that are not on the white list are designated dark red or grey.
    • As of 1 April 2022, there are no countries on the very high-risk countries list.

    Netherlands

    • Effective 20 April 2022, those arriving by air no longer need to complete and carry a health declaration.

    Russia

    • Effective 15 April 2022:
      • Entry is again permitted through the land borders with China and Mongolia.
      • Air communication is resumed withAfghanistan, Algeria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Fiji, Israel, Jamaica, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malaysia, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, North Korea, Pakistan, Philippines, South Africa, Tanzania, Uruguay, Zimbabwe.
    • Russia has now lifted flight and entry restrictions for citizens and permanent residents of the following “green list” countries:
      • Abkhazia, Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Argentina, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Austria, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Bulgaria, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czechia, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominican Republic, Egypt, Ethiopia, Fiji, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, India, Iraq, Iran, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Lesotho, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritius, Moldova, Mongolia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Netherlands, New Zealand, North Korea, Norway, North Macedonia, Oman, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Qatar, Serbia, Seychelles, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, South Ossetia, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, the United States, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Vietnam, Zimbabwe.
      • These individuals are eligible to obtain invitations and visas of all types.
      • Entry to Russia is now permitted for citizens and permanent residents of these countries travelling from other green-list countries.
        • Citizens and foreign nationals of green-list countries (including Belarus) can enter Russia not only by air but also by rail from other green-list countries.
        • Citizens and foreign nationals of green-list countries can enter Russia from Belarus only by air.
      • Note that foreign nationals on these permitted flights are still required to obtain invitations and work permits. To obtain these documents, it is still necessary to include such foreign nationals in the state approved lists.
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