January 1st is a typical date to introduce changes. One of the most common changes is the raise of the salary threshold for knowledge migrants, graduates and EU Blue Card holders. New salary levels were introduced: the knowledge migrant must now receive a salary of € 4,324 (over 30 years) and € 3,170 (under 30 years) gross per month, 8% holiday allowance excluded. The EU Blue Card holder at least € 5066 per month and the graduate € 2, 272.
A welcome change for small companies (< 50 employees) wishing to be registered as an accredited sponsor for the knowledge migrant procedure, is that the administrative governmental fee has been halved; from a € 5276 fee to € 2638.
A typical amendment that has taken place is that Japanese nationals no longer have free access to the Dutch market. “Typical” as for the last two years Japanese nationals were exempt from the work authorisation requirement. Those Japanese nationals in the possession of a residence permit allowing them to have free access to the Dutch market, do not need to worry. They are entitled to this right until their present residence permit expires.
The most “feared” amendment which was to be implemented on January 1st of this year was the increase of the period of years of eligibility for Dutch citizenship. The expected date of implementation of the increase from five to seven years is now April 1st of this year. This seven years condition is only applicable to those applicants whom have lived in the Netherlands for three years or shorter. Consequently, if you have lived for at least three consecutive years in the Netherlands at the time the amendment becomes effective, Dutch citizenship can be obtained after five years of consecutive residence in the Netherlands.
Last but certainly not least the implementation of the ICT Directive in Dutch legislation allows for work possibilities in other EU Member States. We expect the ICT permit to be a tremendous benefit for multinational companies and expect may applications in 2017!