The United States' Diversity Visa Lottery for 2010 is now open and will close on December 1st. Only about 5 weeks are left to submit a DV-2010 application. Interested applicants are advised not to wait; Apply now! It is very possible that on the last day for submissions the Government website will not be able cope with demand.
The number of immigrant visas that will be granted under the Green Card Lottery is limited to 55,000. This year, a very significant change is that people born in Russia are eligible again, after being left out for several years. In last year's DV-2009 Green Card Lottery, over 9.1 million qualified entries were received.
European businesses have been taking part in an informal debate on the need for skilled workers from outside of the European Union. There doesn't seem any doubt that highly skilled immigration is extremely important.
One of the main points in the new immigration pact, led by France, is to find a common approach for legal immigration into the 27-member bloc and to make the EU more attractive to top talent from around the world. The Blue Card would replace 27 separate visa regimes that currently exist across the EU.
Proposed in October of 2007, the Blue Card is gaining more acceptance among member nations. Some nations initially resisted the call for a common immigration policy, but changes since the initial proposal -- such as letting each nation decide the number of immigrants they will let in -- have made the Blue Card more attractive.
The Swedish government is proposing changes to their immigration policies that would grant more power to employers in deciding whether they need to recruit foreign labor. The proposal calls for the changes to take effect on December 15th.
Under the proposal, an employer would be allowed to decide their need to hire nationals from outside of the European Economic Area; Currently a public authority decides this. Temporary work and residence permits would be granted for up to 4 years; after this period a foreign worker could apply for permanent residence. Employees that lose their job during the temporary permit stage would need to find a job within 3 months or face losing their work permit.
The United Kingdom has released details on 2 new visitor visas that will become available for athletes and entertainers coming into Britain to take part in events related to their occupations. Under the new visas, amateur sportspeople and entertainers can come into the UK for temporary periods, which could be up to 6 months for some sportspeople.
According to the UK Border and Immigration Agency (BIA), the new visas will 'sit alongside' the new 5-tier points-based system, which covers more long-term, employment-based immigration. There are different conditions for amateurs and professionals.
The Danish Immigration Service (DIS) undertook a fact finding mission to New Delhi and Bangalore, India during the first half of May this year. They have now released a report entitled 'Recruitment of IT Specialists from India.'
The report takes a look at the current market for overseas IT labor from India and the experiences of those thinking of choosing Denmark as a skilled immigration destination. The mission came as a result of an agreement between the Danish government and various political parties on initiatives to "enhance the chances of international recruitment."
In a Senate budget hearing on October 21st, Australian Immigration Minister Chris Evans said that the country may see a decrease in its migration quota next year. He said that no decision had been made as of yet; however, Mr. Evans feels that the current global financial crisis will "force" the government to cut immigration numbers.
This is not the first hint that immigration quotas in Australia may get trimmed in future. Only 2 weeks before the hearing, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said that economic circumstances may cause the government to reduce immigration quotas. He stated that it's "normal" for governments to curb immigration policies during economic downturns.
The results from a scheduled biannual review for New Zealand's two skills shortage lists have been delayed. The revised Essential Skills in Demand Lists, which includes the Long Term Skill Shortage List and the Immediate Skill Shortage List, were scheduled to come into effect on December 1st this year.
It is now expected that the updated lists will come into effect on March 3rd, 2009. The postponement will allow Immigration New Zealand to upgrade their systems over the coming months in an effort to ensure "stability" in the application process.
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