The Japan System for Special Highly Skilled Professionals (J-Skip) was introduced in April 2023. Applicants will be granted the visa status of “Highly Skilled Professional” if their academic (or professional) background and annual income are above a certain level, in addition to the existing Highly Skilled Professional Point System.
The “Highly Skilled Professional” status of residence has three sub-types depending on the activity the foreign national is to engage in while in Japan.
(a) “Advanced academic research activities”
Research, teaching, or teaching activities based on a contract with a Japanese public or private organization (e.g., professor or researcher at a university, etc.)
(b) “Advanced specialized/technical activities”
Activities to engage in work requiring knowledge or skills in the natural sciences or humanities based on a contract with a Japanese public or private organization (e.g., persons engaged in the development of new products in a company, international lawyers, etc.)
(c) “Advanced business management activities”
Activities to engage in business managerial or administrative activities at a Japanese public or private organization (e.g., a business manager of a company engaged in global business development, etc.)
For the Special Highly Skilled Professionals (J-Skip) visa, in addition to the above (a) to (c), the following requirements are required for each type of activity.
Those in (a) and (b) must meet one of the following requirements:
- Master’s degree or higher and annual income of at least 20 million yen
- At least 10 years of work experience and an annual income of at least 20 million yen
Those who meet the following criteria for (c) must have the following:
- At least 5 years of experience in business management or administration and annual income of at least 40 million yen
Special Highly Skilled Professionals (J-Skip) visa holders are entitled to the following preferential treatment, which is more extensive than the preferential treatment under the Highly Skilled Professionals Point System.
Highly Skilled Professional I”
- Permitting multiple residence activities
- Granting a period of stay of 5 years
- Relaxation of permanent residency requirements concerning residence history
- Allowing for spouse employment
- Inviting parents to Japan under certain conditions
- Employment of domestic servants under certain conditions
- Use of priority lanes at large airports, etc.
- Priority processing for immigration and visa procedures
Highly Skilled Professional II”
- “Highly Skilled Professional II” is a status of residence that can be transferred to those who have been working as a “Highly Skilled Professional I” (Special Highly Skilled Professional) for one year or more.
- Can perform almost all work qualification activities in conjunction with “Highly Skilled Professional I”
- Indefinite period of stay
- Preferential measures from 3 to 7 above also apply
The Special Highly Skilled Professionals (J-Skip) visa is a Japanese work visa that must be applied for and obtained for the purpose of working while staying in Japan. The applicant must have a contracting organization (a place of employment) or an activity organization (a company, etc., that manages and administers the business) in Japan. In addition, the annual income requirement for the application must be the expected annual income paid by the organization where the foreigner plans to work or conduct activities in Japan.