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Sweden Trials Digital Passport Verification for Work and Student Permits

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Great news for international students and professionals seeking work permits in Sweden! The Swedish Migration Agency has launched a pilot program allowing applicants from 23 countries to ditch the embassy visit and verify their passports digitally.

This innovative scheme streamlines the application process, eliminating the need for potentially expensive and lengthy journeys to a Swedish embassy for passport verification.

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Digital Passport Verification

Digital passport verification is a process where individuals can verify their identity by scanning their passport and using facial recognition technology through a mobile app. This eliminates the need for in-person verification at embassies, streamlining the application process for visas, permits, and other official documentation.

How it Works

Fredrik Larsson, from the Migration Agency’s foreign operations unit, explained the process: “Applicants can now download an app, scan their passport, and utilize facial recognition to confirm their identity for work and student permit applications.”

Those eligible for the pilot, including those who applied in 2024 but haven’t shown their passports yet, will receive an automated email with a link to a secure e-service. This link remains valid for one week, allowing applicants to conveniently verify their passports online.

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Also Read: Sweden to Make It More Difficult to Become a Citizen

Benefits and Target Countries

This initiative aims to simplify the application process for international talent. Previously, a personal visit to a Swedish embassy (sometimes located in a different country) was mandatory for passport verification.

The pilot program is expected to benefit around 19,000 work permit applicants and 5,000 students annually from the following countries:

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  • USA
  • Canada
  • Brazil
  • Mexico
  • Australia
  • UK
  • New Zealand
  • Hong Kong
  • Taiwan
  • Japan
  • South Korea
  • Chile
  • Singapore
  • Malaysia
  • North Macedonia
  • Georgia
  • Ukraine
  • Argentina
  • Colombia
  • Peru
  • Albania
  • Serbia
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina

It’s important to note that this initial phase excludes major work permit countries like India. These countries were chosen because their citizens don’t require visas to visit Sweden.

Future Expansion

The Local inquired about the program’s potential expansion to other countries. The Migration Agency remains tight-lipped on the timeline but has acknowledged the possibility.

Conclusion

This digital passport verification scheme represents a significant step towards a more efficient and applicant-friendly immigration process in Sweden. Stay tuned for updates on the program’s potential expansion to include more countries.


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