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Japan to consider permanent residency for foreign blue-collar workers

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Japan is seriously considering to allow skilled blue-collar workers with highly sought after skills a permanent stay with their families, as Japan struggles with labor shortage and the declining birth rate.

There are requirements to gain access to the privilege of having a permanent residency which includes being absolutely proficient in Nihongo above the basic levels and experience in one of more than 10 fields such as nursing, agriculture and construction.

A visa of up to five years will be issued for those that qualify for the first type of residence status but are not allowed to bring any family members. Those that qualify for the second type of status which is mainly highly skilled laborers will be offered permanent residency and are allowed to bring any family members to Japan.

To pass for any status mentioned above, one has to take examinations conducted by ministries overseeing each industry and speak conversational Japanese.

Adding to that, since October of 2017, the number of foreign workers in Japan hit over a million, more than double since 2012. These numbers include part-time workers with student visas and trainees under technical training programs. Among them are Chinese, Vietnamese, Filipinos, Brazilians and even Nepalese.

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