Cheaper visas for foreign academics

By Petra Meijer

As of this month, prices of entry visas and residence permits for non-EU students and academics will drop considerably.

After a decision by the Council of State, Fred Teeven, the State Secretary for Security and Justice, has decided to halve fees. Formerly, academics and students had to pay 600 Euros and will now pay 300 Euros for an entry visa and residence permit. For academics, the costs for the issue of a residence permit will drop from 375 Euros to 300, although students will still have to pay 150 Euros for this service.
The Council of State’s decision is notable, because the fees were raised by 33 per cent as recently as 1 September 2011. The Minister of Immigration and Asylum Policy at the time, Gerd Leers, thought this raise necessary to cover more of the costs. In October, the Council of State ruled that the Netherlands was not adhering to the European directives for family reunification and that visas and residence permits were too expensive, in response to which the Minister for Security and Justice decided to lower the fees.
Anyone who has paid the former fee after the Council of State’s decision is entitled to a refund, according to Teeven in a letter to the Senate. Members of the PVV party are worried that lower fees will attract more people and have demanded that measures be taken. However, the Minister deems that unnecessary.

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