Monday 6 November 2023

SEF Relinquished: AIMA (Agency for Integration, Migration and Asylum) Steps In

On October 29, 2023, the Agency for Integration, Migration and Asylum (AIMA) officially commenced its operations, marking a significant shift in the management of immigration-related administrative processes. This development comes as a response to the government's call for a new focal point on reception, integration, and asylum. AIMA's inaugural budget amounts to 81 million euros, with the majority of funding derived from internal and European sources, totaling over 95%.

The establishment of AIMA signifies the formal division of policing and administrative functions, paving the way for the introduction of innovative approaches, features, and policies aimed at enhancing the accessibility and security of services. This separation is poised to bolster confidence and credibility among users and society at large.

AIMA has inherited a considerable workload, with 347,000 pending cases from its predecessor, the Immigration and Borders Service (SEF). Addressing these cases, particularly those related to family reunification, is a top priority for AIMA, prompting the initiation of a specialized operation in the first quarter of the following year.

Currently, AIMA is commencing operations with approximately 740 employees stationed across the country. An additional 190 personnel will be recruited to augment the workforce, thereby enhancing the quality and efficiency of services provided.

To expedite the resolution of pending cases, AIMA is planning an extensive operation to conclude these matters by the end of March 2024, leveraging the assistance of local authorities and the network of Local Support Centers for the Integration of Migrants. Moreover, immediate measures will be taken, such as establishing an AIMA Contact Center and its affiliates, to bolster physical presence at service centers.

In terms of key initiatives:

By the end of 2023:

AIMA Portal Launch: This will streamline the process for family reunification requests for senior residents, eliminating the need for phone scheduling.

In the first quarter of 2024:
  • Mega Operation to Clear 347,000 Pending Cases: This will involve collaboration with local authorities, professional organizations, and Integration Support Centers.
  • Strategic Plan for Promoting Portuguese Language Among Migrants.

In 2024:
  • AIMA Portal opens for residence permit applications and renewals.
  • Establishment of 10 additional service stations.
  • Introduction of a high-quality telephone call center.
  • Creation of a multidisciplinary national center overseeing international protection processes and providing support for refugees and asylum seekers throughout their journey in Portugal.

Nationality Law: Time for Nationality Determination Begins from Date of Resident Card Application

Attention Immigrants in Portugal: Your Path to Citizenship Just Got Easier Send Your Query Now: Portugal Immigration Affair Portugal's C...