The Netherlands has launched a pilot program that allows startup companies, with less than 15 staff members, to sponsor non-EU foreign nationals under a new Essential Start-Up Personnel Residence Permit.

Key Points

  • Startup companies providing services to the Netherlands with new technology and innovative working methodologies can sponsor non-EU foreign national employees under the new residence permit.
  • The company can have no more than 15 employees and cannot employer more than five non-EU nationals with the Essential Start-Up Personnel permit.
  • The foreign national must have a local employment contract and be paid by the local company, meet the mandatory salary requirements and also receive 1% of stocks or shares of the company.
  • The permit will be valid for an initial three years.

Looking forward

The pilot program is intended to spur interest in highly skilled foreign nationals seeking to work for innovative start-up companies in the Netherlands.  The Netherlands hopes to become more competitive in the search for global talent and strengthen its labor force by attracting the best migrants as employees for startups.

Originally published 14 June 2021

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