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23 May, 2024
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Greece introduces ''talent and tech visas'' for non-EU citizens

New visas offer gateway for skilled workers

Kathimerini Greece Newsroom

Greece is about to introduce more formal incentives for attracting non-European Union citizens, this time based on their talent and expertise, as a means of boosting the country’s supply of skilled staff, which is seriously lagging demand in the high-tech sectors.

Migration Minister Dimitris Kairidis presented the cabinet with his plan for the introduction of a “Talent Visa” and a “Tech Visa”on March 29. Aimed at attractive third-country graduates to live and work in Greece for a specific period that could be renewed.

Following the optimum practices of other European countries, Athens intends to respond to the needs of the labor market for skilled human resources, while also attracting young people with the desire to test their skills in a European Union country that has a robust startup environment.

The ministry’s bill, which will soon reach Parliament, besides making the penalties for migrant traffickers stricter, will introduce a series of new visas for attracting highly skilled graduates, “the most emblematic of which, attracting publicity, are the Talent and Tech Visas,” Kairidis told state radio ERA on the weekend.

As he explained, while the government is proceeding with bilateral agreements with other countries for low-skilled employees to cover the needs of the local labor market mainly for menial workers, “we want our country to attract talent, and that is where the challenge of the 21st century lies.”

The Tech Visa will be valid for one year and allows the individual to work, change employers or become self-employed during the visa period without needing further permission. The Talent Visa will be open to third-country university graduates from the last five years, without the requirement to speak Greek, as long as they speak good English.

“It is one thing to fight illegal migration and it’s quite another to encourage the legal arrivals in favor of Greek society, especially in high specializations and talent. So we have the Tech Visa for those who come to work at startups, and I mean in startups that are registered in the country’s startup register, and on the other hand, the Talent Visa for graduates of the best universities in the world, whom we give the opportunity to come for a year without a contract, just to be here, as long as they are graduates of these great universities that we have in the lists and rankings,” said Kairidis.

Cyprus  |  Greece  |  visa

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