Paraguay's President Mario Abdo Benitez Thursday enacted the country's new immigration law, which seeks to update practices in this regard as per recommendations from international agencies.
Despite the changes introduced, Paraguayan authorities made it clear that all procedures established under Mercosur regulations and the General Law on Refugees will remain in force.
The General Directorate of Migration has been renamed as the National Directorate of Migration and is autonomous to dictate its own bylaws as well as to generate, manage, and invest its own resources.
According to the new provisions, temporary residents will now be eligible for a Paraguayan ID card with a duration equal to that of a permanent residence card. Such a document would grant holders access to public services and other benefits that were not within their status' rights.
Temporary residents will also have up to two years to stay in the country, instead of one.
The new law also created the so-called spontaneous or occasional residence for foreigners entering the country to perform occasional lawful activities for up to 90 days, which can be extended for another 90 days.
A temporary residence remains a requirement before achieving permanent residence, except for foreign relatives of Paraguayan nationals such as children, spouses, and grandchildren up to 18 years of age, who are eligible for direct permanent residence.
Foreigners who can reliably prove that they have made investments in the country under Law 4986/2013 of the Unified System of Business Attention for the Opening and Closing of Companies (Suace) may also forgo the temporary residence step.
Permanent residence permits will be valid for 10 years, as per Law 6984/2022, which repeals Law 978/1996.