Europe

Finland Selects New Outsourcing Company for Visa & Residence Permit Applications’ Reception

Finland has selected VF Worldwide Holdings Ltd as the partner of the country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs to help with the reception of visa and residence permit applications.

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The decision has been confirmed through a statement provided by the Finnish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, following a tender launched in the fall of 2023, in this regard, Schengen.News reports.

The Ministry said that applications for participation were received from four service providers, three of which advanced to the tender stage, while the final offers were received from the applicants at the beginning of June with a decision made on June 14.

When making the selection decision, the quality of the providers’ customer service as well as the financial and technical ability to handle the reception of visa and residence permit applications in accordance with Finnish requirements was evaluated.

Finnish Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Confirming that the contract negotiations are set to begin in August this year, the Ministry said that there were no appeals from the decision by the deadline of 28 June this year.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs uses an external service provider for reception services for visa and residence permit applications in approx. 30 countries, in a total of almost a hundred locations. The tasks of the external service provider include, among other things, the reception of applications and the collection and forwarding of biometric data and application fees to the representative office.

Finnish Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Through a statement, the Ministry stressed that the external service provider does not make any visa decisions, ensuring that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will continue to be responsible for visa decisions.

More Than 1 Million Residence Permits Issued in Finland from 2015 to 2023

About one million residence permits have been granted by authorities in Finland for a period from 2015-2023.

According to a report from PT-Media, 978,506 residence permits have been granted to non-EU immigrants since 2015.

However, in March this year, the Finnish Ministry of the Interior unfolded a new project the purpose of which is to apply stricter criteria for permanent residence permits.

The Finnish government aims, through this project, to encourage persons who immigrated to the country to follow the rules of Finnish society, stressing that successful integration is a prerequisite for a permanent residence permit.

In addition, Finish authorities announced that from October 1, 2024, stricter rules for those planning to acquire citizenship will be applied.

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