The government plans to set a maximum immigration quota of 0.1 percent of the total population, or just below 1,320 people for 2016. Minister of Entrepreneurship Liisa Oviir sees a need to increase the number in the coming years.
The number of people applying for work-related residence permits in Estonia is growing each year, Oviir said in a letter to the Minister of Internal Affairs.
If the state's Work in Estonia initative that aims to attract foreign talent to Estonia succeeds, the number of applications will rise further, Oviir noted.
“Whereas the quota for 2016 is unlikely to hinder the program, the ones for 2017 and 2018 might become a real problem. It is therefore important to launch a dialogue into the possibility of rising this quota in cooperation with the Ministry of Interior Affairs and all other parties involved in the decision,” Oviir said.
The quota includes residence permits for working and business.
From 2012-2014 the immigration quota was 0.075 percent and in 2015 0.1 percent of the number of permanent residents.
As of December 1, 1,137 of the this year's 1,322 available permits had been granted.
Editor: M. Oll