Proposal for a new Visa directive
With the aim of making Europe even more attractive for foreign researchers, the European Commission proposed on 25 March 2013 a new visa directive for working periods exceeding three months.
The new visa application shall be shorter, more opportunities to access the labour market while facilitating intra-EU mobility will be provided. The current two directives - Researchers and Students Directive - have not fully overcome all hindrances researchers face when wanting to come to Europe for a research project.
The Commission is now proposing to set of clearer, more consistent and transparent rules that will improve:
- Procedural guarantees : The 60-day time limit for Member States' authorities to decide on a visa application or residence permit will make the application process more straightforward and transparent.
- Access to the labour market : Researchers will be allowed to remain for up to 12 months on the territory after finalisation of their research to identify new job opportunities or set up a business. This will not amount to an automatic right to work, as granting a work permit remains a national responsibility.
- Simpler and more flexible rules will increase the possibility for researchers, students and remunerated trainees to move within the EU for their projects. Family members of researchers will also be granted certain mobility rights.
The proposed Directive will be discussed and agreed upon by the European Parliament and the Council of the EU. The Commission estimates that the new rules will take effect as of 2016.