Draft law concerning the national D visa to be circulated for comments
The Ministry for Foreign Affairs has sent the draft law concerning the amendment of the Aliens Act, prepared in cooperation with the authorities, for a round of consultation. It proposes that Finland would also adopt the national D visa. The proposal establishes the visa application and the prerequisites for issuing.
The national D visa is based on the Schengen Convention, and the prerequisites for their issuing can also be regulated nationally. With the national D visa, individuals are allowed to reside in the granting country for a maximum of one year. The national D visa also allows to reside in the Schengen Area for a maximum of three months within any period of six months.
The adoption of the national visa presented in the Government proposal is one measure will which accelerate and promote specialists’ and startup entrepreneurs’ entry into the country and, simultaneously, boost labour migration.
According to the proposal, the Finnish Immigration Service could grant the national D visa to specialists and startup entrepreneurs, as defined in the draft law, and their family members who have been granted residence permits. In this case, applicants would not be forced to wait for the completion of the residence permit card and its delivery abroad. The development work concerning the national visa system, in which the technical side of the D visa granting will be built, will also be carried out in connection with the project for introducing the new act. The target is that the Government proposal will be issued during the spring and the law would enter into force in the autumn of 2021.
Due to schedule issues, the legislation drafting of the national D visa is divided into two phases. During the first phase, it was decided, on the basis of the Government policy, to combine the use of the national D visa with the facilitation of the skilled workforce’s entry into the country, in other words, with the creation of the so-called fast lane service promise for specialists and startup entrepreneurs and their family members. The national D visa would contribute to the realisation of the aforementioned fast lane service promise.
The aim is to continue the national D visa preparations also after this proposal. Then, the aim is to assess other possible target groups and use purposes for the national D visa alongside the Aliens Act development work. All other Schengen countries have already adopted the national D visa, and the target groups and possible uses vary between the countries.