British Prime Minister Proposes Two-year Transition Period for Brexit. In a landmark Brexit speech given Friday in Florence, British Prime Minister Theresa May reiterated her goal of completing Brexit negotiations and exiting the EU on March 29, 2019, but in a new development, also proposed a two-year post-exit “implementation period”. During this proposed period, the UK would continue to participate in the single market and EU nationals would be able to continue living and working in the UK, albeit with some form of registration (details to be determined at a later date). The current round of Brexit negotiations began on Monday in Brussels.
German Elections Not Expected to Impact Migration. Following German parliamentary elections held over the weekend, current German Chancellor Angela Merkel is widely expected to retain her position (her conservative party came in first, winning 34.7% of seats). However, she must now build a new coalition government which could take until the end of the year. The far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party performed better than expected, becoming the first far-right party to win seats in the German parliament in more than half a century. The election is not expected to impact high skilled migration to Germany.
Italy Unveils Online Schengen Visa Forms. The government of Italy has unveiled a new web portal for individuals to complete a Schengen visitor visa application online. The new online form is only for short-stay visa application lasting up to 90 days (C type visas). Long-term visa applications will continue to be filled out using the paper application.