Thursday, 31 January 2013

How to get a Visa in Malta - Non-EU Citizens

(By popular demand, I have written an extended version of my previous post on the visa issue.)
I was fortunate enough (in terms of travelling if nothing else) to be born within that block of countries that we call the European Union.  Makes life simpler at airports.  If you are from outside of that group of disparate nations, then getting a long-term visa for Malta becomes a little more complicated.  I am no lawyer, as eagle-eyed readers of these posts may have noticed, but I'm going to share what I know about the whole messy business here:


Holiday Visas:

This is the easy one.  Getting a three month holiday visa for Malta is no trouble for anyone.  You can get a tourist visa for 3 months out of 6 in any Schengen area country.  Should you wish to extend this by a further 3 months you need to apply to the Malta Immigration department and give them a valid reason why they should agree to the extension.  In my experience, English language students usually have little problem getting such an extension when it is accompanied by a letter from their school here in Malta.  
In any event, you are obviously not entitled to work on a tourist visa.

Working Visa:

This is all down to a company hiring you and then persuading the Maltese government that they need you for whatever the job in question involves.  The company must be able to show that they advertised for a Maltese candidate and could not find a suitably qualified candidate.  So for example if you speak Hindi and a company here does a lot of business with India, you might meet the criteria.  The obstacle here is that the company has to do all the work on your behalf, so they have to really want you for this job.

The alternative is to set up your own business or provide over €100,000 investment in a Maltese business, in which case you can apply for a permit yourself.  Having €100,000 to throw around tends to make a lot of things in life that bit easier.

Residence Visa:

If you have had the working visa for a while, it may be extended into a longer term arrangement.  If not, then you are principally looking at your relationships to other people as a way to get residence yourself.  Marriage or engagement to an EU citizen, long term relationship with a Maltese or EU citizen, parent of Maltese children, of Maltese descent but born in another country... these are all possibilities.

In summary - it is not easy.  Malta is one of the most crowded pieces of real estate in Europe and so the government does not hand out long-term visas without good cause.




Disclaimer:  As previously mentioned, I am no expert in this field, so please don't take any of the above as legally binding.  For full information go to the Maltese government site or consult a law firm.   For those with something to share or who want to point out some glaringly obvious mistake I have made, please add your comment below the line.

(If you have no interest in obtaining working visas and are not from outside of the European Union... why have you read this far?)

2 comments:

  1. Hi,
    I am going to move to Malta from Norway next two weeks for the internship. I am not sure that I can work as part- time job in Malta with Schengen Visa (for student), which will be expired at 31th August, 2014. By the way, the company where I am going to undergo the internship also agree to help me with supporting documents to extend the visa for authorizing in Malta after coming-expired time. Unfortunately, this is un-paid internship.

    I am looking forward to see your reply.

    Thanks so much

    ReplyDelete

Please feel free to comment below, all feedback welcome - it's great to hear other people's opinions and experiences.