In a step to encourage more global folks to start-up from France, the government has announced a “French Tech Visa” in order to attract foreign tech talents. The latest announcement avails a four year visa to you and your family. Interestingly, the declaration comes just before the 2017 presidential elections. Now since we aren’t really a political publication, lets move on to the more interesting finer details of this new Visa.
If you’d know, previously a “French Tech Ticket” was launched back in 2015 which comprised of a visa, some grants coupled with some administrative help. And this program seems to be going pretty good because the two batches of startups under this program are having a satisfactory stay in France.
However the Tech Visa goes way beyond the Tech Ticket for a good engineer, designer, a VC or a late stage entrepreneur in many terms.
The citizens of the European Union of course are in no need for this visa. However, residents form the rest of the world, who are looking to set up a base in France and leverage this country’s advancement in tech could apply for the visa for an assured fast-track processing. The applicant’s family is also eligible as per the program. It appears that no restriction has been applied to the number of family members.
There are certain other ways too, of securing these visas. Applicant entrepreneurs will also be provided partnerships with accelerators and entry to various startup competitions. If they manage to participate in any of them, they may secure a visa.
The French government is also making a a list of “100+ leading French startups”, which is yet to be finished. Again, if one manages to secure job in any of these companies, you may acquire the visa.
One may also apply for “Passport Talent”, another new program, which provides visa to people with “exceptional technical, artistic or scientific abilities”. The criteria for judging that exceptional part of you isn’t clearly defined though.
Investors can obtain visa if they work for a French VC firm, or working with an international VC firm which is expanding with a new office in France. They may also apply for Passport Talent.
French startups have had troubles in obtaining talented French workers lately. Therefore, this step could be considered very important for boosting the overall French startup ecosystem.
In past, there have been reports that the people working in the French startups have observed a lot of trouble in acquiring visa. And with this latest announcement, their feedbacks about getting visa from now would be interesting to listen.
The declaration has come right before the presidential elections because the future President, who knows, could be suspicious about the concepts of immigration, but would possibly not make changes to a program that is already functioning well.