About 70 ABLV clients likely to lose residency permits

About 500 third-country nationals have residency permits in Latvia, provided in exchange for deposits in the country's banks. About 70 of these permits were provided for deposits in the imploding ABLV Bank, and these are likely not to be renewed upon expiration, reports Latvian Radio March 15.

"The law says if the circumstances.. upon which foreigners have received residency permits have changed, the residency permit is cancelled," said Maira Roze, a high-ranking official in Latvia's Citizenship and Migration Affairs Office.

"The time has come to use the resources that the state granted to the Security Police to increase personnel," said MP Ainars Latkovskis (Unity), who chairs a committee charged with matters of interior and defense.

"We have to revise and look at whether the basis for [granting the permits] still exists, and then legal experts have to be involve to see whether the residency permits can be cancelled legally," he said.

Residency permit holders have to register each year at the migration office, and prove that their deposits are still extant. If they are not, the office cancels the permit, said Maira Roze. 

According to Latvian law, temporary residence permits are granted to third-country nationals who have deposits of at least €280,000 in a Latvian bank. This scheme has mostly been used by Russian citizens.

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