The Administration’s trends in immigration management, and a 2019 perspective

The new year’s arrival gives us the opportunity of not only examining and studying the noticeable trends in migratory processes that have taken place during the past year, but also gives us the chance to attempt to predict the different trends awaiting in 2019.

It is both statistics and experience of the different migratory proceedings which will inform our predications and allow us to forecast of what the main characteristics and traits of the administrations and government will be in dealing with the national migratory inflow.

Before diving into our predictions of 2019, it is necessary to take a quick look back and study the most notable migratory statistics that have impacted 2018. Spain’s migratory balance ( the difference between arrivals and departures) was positive and contributed to the slight growth of Spain’s population, thus also assisting in the rejuvenation of Spain’s population. Therefore, the trend observed in 2017 is prolonged. Due to these numbers, we can now rest assured that the migratory bubble, which characterized Spain nearly a decade ago, is now over as we now observe a greater amount of mobilization. 

Beyond Spain’s national migratory inflow and outflow, a series of noticeable practices and trends in the National Administration’s and Government’s management of migratory proceedings during 2018 are worthy of being highlighted.

Overabundance of work 

The first of these trends was the overabundance of work that the different Government administrations have experienced, caused by the large number of applications that were submitted ( especially to the Unidad de Grandes Empresas). This overflow of applications and files,  combined with the fact that the number of public employees enabled to study each application was greatly reduced, caused the Administration’s temporary paralysis and obstruction. The Administration’s workload overabundance was in other facets other than the noticeable delay in the issuance of their decision. One of the signs symptomatic of the administration’s overabundance of work was the temporary suspension of in person and telephone consultation. However, the greatest and most notable consequence was the approval of numerous application’s due to application of affirmative silence.

Lack of Uniformity

Another noticeable practice was the lack of uniformity at a national level of each of the foreigner’s local registrations. The local registrations ( whether it be Town Hall Registrations or the EU Certificate) have displayed considerable differences in each of their requirements depending on where in Spain they are carried out.

Limited formalization of the requirements.

Finally, and perhaps one of the more notable trends of 2018 was the lack of formalization of requirements for the different migratory proceedings, which have forced that through experience and inference one deduce the implicit requirements for each process. An example of this has been the change in the Unidad de Grandes Empresas’s requirements and their change in the documents needed to be submitted, as well as the local administration’s adjustment. As consequence of the Administration’s discretion, the slight but significant modification in the processes’ requirements was made.

New authorizations

An aspect worthy of being highlighted was the introduction of new residence authorization which allows those who have finished their studies to reside in Spain so that they can look for employment or carry out an entrepreneurial project.

The analysis and outline of the different trends of 2018 allows us to forecast and predict the possible changes that we will encounter in the administration’s immigration management during 2019. Due to the slow nature of legislation-both in its drafting and application- it is reasonable to assume that the changes we will see will be somewhat pendular and reactive in nature to the trends previously mentioned.

Due to this, one can expect a greater formalization and unification of the different processes and requirement of each of the processes. For instance, it is foreseeable that the previously mentioned Unidad de Grandes Empresas publish a detailed and updated outline of their requirements for their application’s submission. Furthermore, and with the objective of diminishing the number of applications submitted to the Unidad de Grandes Empresas it is reasonable to expect a strengthening in their requirements.

The strengthening in the requirements will not only be motivated by the desire to diminish the number of submitted applications, but also by the motivation to aim for workers that are more highly qualified, thus altering the standard for what is considered a highly qualified worker. Additionally, and much like other countries, one can expect the Administration to change the requirements for each of their applications in order to attract a certain profile of worker.

By Carlos Sáenz de Tejada – Global Immigration Consultant 

Expat Advisors 

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