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Visa Fee Increase in Australia
The Australian Department of Immigration & Citizenship has announced increases to visa application charges.
In line with the release of the Economic Statement for the 2013-2014 financial year, the Australian Government has decided to increase all visa application charges, with the exception of the Student and Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) visa applications. The increase is effective for all applications lodged on or after Sept. 1, 2013.
Immigration Changes in the United Kingdom
The United Kingdom Border Agency announced changes to the country’s immigration rules Sept. 6, 2013. The changes, which come into effect on Oct. 1, 2013, will mean greater flexibility for businesses and workers and include:
Business visitors will benefit from the following changes:
Further changes include:
Minimum Salaries Decreased for Expatriates in Spain
Foreign workers in Spain will find that their salary requirements are lower now, since the government has made some changes to its policies. Effective immediately, the minimum salary thresholds in the country are lower for both European Union (EU) Blue Card holders and foreign employees who transfer using the fast-track process.
The new rates have been established by Spain’s National Statistics Institute, and salaries are now about 0.9 percent lower than last year, for those taking the fast-track route. The country adjusts its salary requirements every August.
An employee qualifies under the fast-track process if he or she meets one of these conditions:
The new minimum salary changes for all affected employees are as follows:
Moreover, Spain’s unemployment rate is the highest in the developed world at 26.2 percent, the source reported. This is more than double the average in the whole euro zone.
“Difficult changes remain ahead, the biggest of all is unemployment,” Economy Minister Luis de Guindos said in a statement. He added that the government will order an independent review of the labor rules that were implemented in 2012, Bloomberg reported. De Guindos hopes Spain can soon “deepen reforms” to solve its labor issues.
New Employment Visa Regulations in Thailand
Thailand instituted new rules governing transferees’ employment visas and passports Aug. 26, 2013. These regulations apply to employees of all companies.
Long-term employment visas can now only be issued or extended until the expiration date of the visa holder’s passport. If the foreign national has a dependent, the dependent’s visa is also restricted by the foreign national’s passport expiration date.
In addition, according to the Immigration Division of the Royal Thai Police, long-term employment visas will no longer be automatically transferred from old passports to new ones. The visa holder will instead have to submit an application form and all necessary documents to request that his or her visa extension be moved to the new passport.
If the visa holder has dependents, they can also file for an extension, but it will have the same expiration date as the primary holder’s new passport and visa. An extension fee of 1,900 baht will also be enforced for all applicants.
In order to best navigate this new regulation, foreign nationals should plan ahead and submit application documents early enough to ensure their visas are transferred to their new passports.
Elaine Martin is director, Immigration Services for
Paragon GeoImmigration, a provider of
global business immigration services in more than 150 countries.
Republished with permission. © 2013 Paragon GeoImmigration.
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