On June 10, 2021, a draft act amending the act on foreigners and some other acts appeared on the website of the Government Legislation Center.
Among the changes proposed by the government, which are to enter into force on September 1, 2021, there are also significant facilitations in obtaining a residence permit for the purpose of running a business.
According to the assumptions of the bill initiator, the facilities will cover natural persons (foreigners) who run a sole proprietorship on the basis of an entry in the CEIDG who are also participants in support programs for foreigners in the scope of starting and conducting business activity in the territory of the Republic of Poland. Currently, there is only one such program, namely "Poland.Business Harbor". Therefore, the proposed changes are to apply only to Belarusian citizens who obtained a visa under this program and set up a sole proprietorship based on an entry in the CEIDG.
The authors of the bill propose to exclude the application of the income criterion to such entrepreneurs when applying for a temporary residence permit for the purpose of conducting business activity, i.e. the following:
1) in the tax year preceding the submission of the application for a temporary residence permit for the purpose of conducting business activity, this entrepreneur’s income is not lower than 12 times the average gross monthly remuneration in the national economy in the voivodeship in which the foreigner resides, in the year preceding the submission of the application, or
2) employment for an indefinite period and full-time for at least 1 year preceding the submission of the application, at least 2 employees who are Polish citizens or specific categories of foreigners (mainly those who have a permanent residence permit or a long-term EU resident), or
3) demonstrating that the foreigner has the means to meet the conditions set out in 1) or 2) in the future or conducts activities allowing for the fulfillment of these conditions in the future, in particular contributing to the growth of investments, technology transfer, introducing beneficial innovations or creating workplaces. The latter of the requirements most often boils down to presenting a business plan to the voivode examining the application for a residence permit.
According to the authors of the draft, these requirements will not be applied to the above-described category of foreigners.
Regarding the application of this criterion to other categories of foreigners running a business, unfortunately the draft act does not provide for any changes, although it seems that these requirements are too strict and do not allow the authority to take into account neither the nature of the conducted business activity, nor the external circumstances and conditions of conducting business activity. activities beyond the foreigner's control, such as the current pandemic situation.
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