United States, Canada, and Mexico Agree to New Trade Deal
US, Mexican, and Canadian leaders have reached an agreement on a new trade deal, the US- Mexico-Canada Agreement ("USMCA"). The new agreement, if approved by Congress, would replace the current trade deal that has been in effect since 1994, the North American Free Trade Agreement ("NAFTA"). While the new agreement introduces several changes-including allowing Mexican workers to join labor unions, protecting workers from unsafe work conditions, and increasing efforts to curb discrimination against women in the workforce, and no longer allowing Canadian businesses to challenge US government policies-the agreement provides very few changes to the immigration provisions under NAFTA. Importantly, the TN category will remain in place for qualifying Mexican and Canadian nationals.
Singapore Testing New Electronic Arrival Card for Foreign Visitors
The Singapore Immigration & Checkpoints Authority ("ICA") recently started a three-month trial of an electronic arrival card for foreign nationals visiting Singapore, whether for business or tourism. Foreign nationals can submit their personal information through the ICA website prior to arriving in Singapore, thereby omitting the need to complete a paper disembarkation/embarkation card, which foreign nationals have been required to complete upon arrival in Singapore. Foreign nationals traveling with their families or as a small group may have the option of completing a group submission. In addition, individual data will be saved for future visits to Singapore. Singapore citizens, permanent residents, and employment pass holders are not required to complete an arrival card. It is believed that the new electronic arrival card system will make the process of entering Singapore more efficient for foreign nationals.
Thai Government Eases Requirements to Hire Foreign Nationals into Certain Positions
The Thai Board of Investment ("BOI") recently announced that all BOI-registered companies can continue to sponsor qualifying foreign nationals for an approved position without having to first apply for a pre-position approval as long as the employer does the following: files an application to cancel the work visa and work permit for the outgoing foreign national employee more than 90 days before the position expires in the Single Window System. This change is to help facilitate the mobility of employees by...