Home Blog A residence permit for highly skilled migrants from Turkey – is it necessary?

A residence permit for highly skilled migrants from Turkey – is it necessary?

Turkey is the bridge between Europe and Asia and is of great importance. Despite the recent downturn, it still plays a prominent role in the world economy. It is a member of the G20, one of the twenty most important economies in the world. Turkey is also a founding member of the United Nations, a member of the Council of Europe (1949), and of NATO (1952). Turkey and the European Union are negotiating its accession to the EU.


The relationship is long; the first ambassador from the Netherlands arrived in Constantinople (present-day Istanbul) in 1612. Cornelis Haga, a thirty-four-year old lawyer and diplomat, traveled by carriage with three merchants’ sons, eight servants, and a chef.  He negotiated a trade agreement with Sultan Ahmed of Blue Mosque fame. The cultural and trade relationships have been carefully maintained ever since — for more than 400 years (from Marc Guillet). Many Dutch entrepreneurs have businesses in Turkey and vice versa. So it’s no surprise that migrants from Turkey and Turkish highly skilled professionals want to pursue their careers in the Netherlands. As mentioned previously, negotiations about accession to the EU are ongoing, and Turkish nationals do not qualify for free movement of citizens. However, they do have a more favourable status.

Highly skilled migrants from Turkey moving to the Netherlands


For over 50 years ( since 1963) there has been an Association Agreement in place between Turkey and what was then the European Community (EC). This  Association Agreement provides Turkish citizens a special position in the Netherlands and the rules to live and work here are different for them – more favourable – than for nationals of  other non-EU countries.

A few examples:

  • Family members who have the right to live as a partner or spouse in the Netherlands are exempt from some of the regular rules for family reunification:
  • Family members do not need to take a basic civic exam (the Basisexamen Inburgering Buitenland) before coming to the Netherlands;
  • Family members do not need to have passed the civic integration examination (the inburgeringsexamen). They also do not need to have passed the civic integration examination if they apply for a humanitarian non-temporary residence permit after a five-year stay with a spouse or partner. This also applies for a permanent residence permit;
  • Discounted immigration and naturalization (IND) fees;
  • If you hold Turkish nationality, you are not required to have a recognized sponsor (referent) such as Payingit International. However, the process goes much faster if it involves a recognized sponsor –  several weeks instead of several months.

What can Payingit International do for you?

Payingit International is seeing an increase in the number of applications from highly skilled knowledge workers from Turkey. As a recognized IND sponsor, we are familiar with the specific IND application requirements for Turkish employees. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us, or browse our website for helpful information www.payingit-international.com.


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Karin Otten Consultant International