Pro-Link GLOBAL Immigration Dispatch | July 11-18, 2016

RUSSIA | New Stricter Health Insurance Requirements Being Enforced
On June 1st the Russian Department of Federal Migration Service (FMS) began enforcing new stricter minimum requirements regarding voluntary medical insurance (VMI) for foreign employees working in the Russian Federation.

Pro-Link GLOBAL began seeing active enforcement of these new standards in the Moscow office of the Federal Migration Service, with some enforcement in other FMS regional offices beginning to follow soon after the June 1 roll out. The new standards are not currently being applied to voluntary medical insurance policies which were in effect prior to May 30, 2016. However, the standards appear to be being applied more strictly in some regional offices. Combined with the ongoing restructuring of the FMS into the Ministry of Internal Affairs, many mobility professionals in Russia expect the new stricter standards to begin being applied uniformly across the Federation.

While some of the standards are not new, the key minimum standards for voluntary medical insurance are as follows:

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CHINA / ISRAEL | New Bilateral Ten-Year Multiple Entry Visa Coming Soon
Vice Premier Liu Yandong of China and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel were in Jerusalem on March 29th to witness the signing of an agreement to provide ten-year multiple entry visas to business and tourist travelers to each other’s countries. The signing was part of the Second Meeting of the China-Israel Joint Committee on Innovation Cooperation, where the two nations have been meeting to discuss ways to foster mutually beneficial economic activity between them.

The implementation of these new visas are in various stages within the two countries. In Israel, a resolution approving the new ten-year visa was passed by the Israeli Knesset’s Committee on Internal Affairs in late June. The resolution goes next to the Minister of the Interior for signature, after which time it will be implemented. To date, the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs has not publically announced when China will begin granting the new ten-year multiple visas to Israeli visitors. But when implemented, Israel will join only the US and Canada as the third nation to be given this ten-year visa option by China.

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SINGAPORE | New Online Process for Police Certificates of Clearance
Singapore Police Force (SPF) criminal record Certificates of Clearance (COCs), also commonly referred to as Police Clearances, will now be processed through an electronic application process available online at the Singapore Police Force’s eServices website. The previously available walk-in service has been discontinued.

Applicants can apply and pay for the COC and schedule their fingerprinting appointment all through the online system. After appearing in-person for fingerprinting at their scheduled appointment time, the applicant, in most cases, will receive their Certificate of Clearance the same day.

This new e-service process is available to both Singaporean citizens and foreign citizens who have resided in Singapore for at least six months. Applicants residing overseas can also apply and pay for the COC via the new online process, but they must mail in the printed online receipt and finger print impressions taken by an authorized institution in their country of residence. They will then receive their COC by mail. Note that foreign citizens must first file an “appeal to apply,” which can also be completed on the SPF eServices website as well.

This new online process should make it more convenient for applicants to obtain their Certificates of Clearance from the Singapore Police Force and should shorten the current processing time to one week from the previous time of two weeks. 

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