On July 20, 2021, a new Aliens Act came into effect. This law introduced new requirements for permanent residence permits, which, among others, dramatically affect doctoral students and other researchers as well. The new Aliens Act requires those who apply for permanent residence permit to be financially self-sufficient, and in the Alien Ordinance (Utlänningsförordningen) it is then specified that the financial self-sufficiency must last for a certain (unspecified) duration of time. The interpretation of this phrase, “a certain duration of time” (“viss varaktighet”), was left up to the Migration Agency (Migrationsverket) to provide, and they did so in a legal directive (Rättsligt ställningstagande) on the July 20, 2021. An interpretation that have worrying consequences for the doctoral students.
The interpretation from the Migration Agency:
“The Swedish Migration Agency considers you to meet the duration requirement if you have permanent employment, or if you have fixed-term employment lasting at least 18 months from the date on which your application is examined.”
International doctoral students and other researchers in Swedish higher education institutes in collaboration with Sveriges universitetslärare och forskare (SULF), Fackförbundet ST and Sveriges Förenade studentkårer-Doktorandkommitén (SFS-DK) started the petition Change the legal grounds of permanent residency for doctoral students and other researchers in Sweden.
Update October 13: The petition is now closed and will be handed over to the politicians.
Politicians are responsible for the negative changes to the Aliens Act that were introduced this summer. It is time to make them aware of the consequences of this decision for doctoral candidates and researchers. SULF has put together a text that you can send to politicians to draw their attention to the problem. Use the form or copy paste the text and email it to selected politicians.
SULF in the media
The Local, opinion: ”Sweden’s new migration act will send international talent elsewhere”