Four Norwegian public authorities have established a joint service centre for foreign workers in the border town of Kirkenes. The centre is the first in Norway to serve cross-border commuters living in the Barents Region, including Russia.
The service centre that opened this week is cooperation between the Labour Inspection Authority, the Police, the Tax Administration and the Directorate of Immigration. At the centre both employers and employees can obtain information, and initiate a fast-track handling of relevant applications.
Norway recently opened up its labour marked in its three northernmost counties, Nordland, Troms and Finnmark for unskilled workers from the part of Russia that is within the Barents Region. This includes Murmansk and Arkhangelsk Oblasts, Nenets Autonomus Area and the two Republics of Komi and Karelia.
But, Norwegian employers still need to show that the people they want to hire can’t be found within the European Union or citizens from countries covered by the European Economic Area (Iceland and Lichtenstein).
Russian citizens from areas outside the Barents Region still need to apply working permits as especially skilled worker or specialist. .
The service centre states that their aim is that all applications that is correctly filled in, includes all necessary documentation and meet the statutory requirements should be processed within ten working days.
A special information website for the service centre is now online available in Norwegian, English and Russian languages. A information folder (pdf) in Russian is also made available for Russian citizens that want to become cross-border commuters to northern Norway.