Japan Established Point System to Determine Foreign Professionals Eligible for Preferential Treatment

Known to many countries across the globe, the Land of the Rising Sun is currently dealing with the consequences of its aging population as a result of its low birth rate and decline in inward migration. With the dearth in the number of professionals in Japan, the government is concerned that it might create an impact in the country’s economic growth and development along the way.


As such, the Japanese government through its National Diet has amended the immigration policies of Japan which took effect last April of 2019 in order to encourage more and more foreign workers and professionals to get employed and reside in Japan.


Photo credit to: https://www.japantimes.co.jp/

The new immigration control act introduced a new category of visa which allows foreign nationals who do not have a high educational attainment to seek gainful employment in the country provided that they have considerable experience in the relevant industry and possess conversational Japanese language proficiency.


Meanwhile, foreign professionals who wish to come to Japan based on the “Highly Skilled Professional” visa are given more perks and preferential treatment to entice them to contribute their specialized skills, expertise and experience to Japanese firms and domestic corporations.


There are three different types of highly skilled professionals. The first type covers the advanced academic research activities. Under this category, academic researchers with masters or doctorate degrees may apply. The second group of highly skilled professionals are those that fall under advanced specialized/technical activities. This includes engineers and foreign professionals with specialized knowledge and abilities. Finally, the third category of highly skilled professionals are those that fall under advanced business management activities such as but not limited to lawyers and business executives.


The above mentioned highly skilled professionals are assessed through a point system based on a point calculation table devised by the Japanese government according to their qualification and certain standards. The government will consider their academic background, professional career, their income earning capacity, age as well as the university where they graduated, among others. Only those foreign professional applicants that reach the score of at least seventy or more points are eligible to avail of the benefits granted to successful applicants under the “Highly Skilled Professional” visa.


Reference: So… What are highly-skilled foreign professionals?


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