BRS report on White Card legislation
The British Residents’ Society have circulated to their members the following information update, following the discussions with the TRNC Interior Ministry which we are sharing for the benefit of other expatriates who have concerns regarding the progress of the white card legislation.
BRS Meeting With Government – “White Card” Legislation
Your government liaison team of Steve Day and Mike Maternaghan, along with the Chairman met with the under-secretary from the Interior Ministry to discuss the impending new law regarding criteria for the granting of a “white card”.
The meeting opened with the BRS expressing members’ concerns and reminding him of the commitment we have made to the TRNC and the contribution we have made over the last two decades. In buying property and land and by raising vast amounts of money for many good causes for example the Public Health Services and many more. It is estimated a million Pounds GBP has been raised over this period
The Under Secretary explained there are two bills. One, concerns details for Citizenship, the other for Permanent Residency (White Card) and Work permits. The latter has been passed by parliament but has not been signed off by the President. The first is still being debated. The benefits of having a White Card are still unclear.
There are quite a number of conditions before applying for Permanent Residency (White Card) some of which are in place at this moment for the under 60’s, first time application for a Temporary Residency and for work permits.
For Permanent Residency there will be a need for
- Minimum Income Levels
- Property Ownership over a certain Value
- Health Checks
- Maximum amount of time permitted out of the country in a year
- A fee for a Permanent Residency with a follow up check every two years
- A need to have some form of Health insurance to cover the use of public sector facilities
The current concession of the over 60’s had not been considered by the government, nor the impact on the ability of those taking the concession to qualify for a white card should they so desire. However the opinion of the under- secretary was that over 60’s who took government advice not to renew can continue not doing if they wish. All suggested qualifications published recently in the media, only refer to those wanting to eventually apply for a “white card” permanent residency. None of the proposals affect those applying for annual temporary residency, the procedure for which remains the same.
During the meeting we put forward a number of case study examples and it became clear that there are anomalies in this bill that have not been thought through.
To his credit the under-secretary acknowledged that there would need to be a rethink on certain clauses and has invited the BRS to go back for further discussions in the next two weeks.
We now have a copy of the bill, in its entirety, and will be having this translated so that we can go through the points in fine detail.
Naturally we will keep members fully informed.
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