Both the EU Blue Card holder and the Dutch highly skilled migrant permit holder may qualify for a permanent EC long-term residence permit, under Directive 2003/109/EC, after a five-year legal stay in the Netherlands.
The benefit for the EU Blue Card holders is that they are allowed to accumulate periods of residence in different Member States in order to fulfill the requirements of 5 years of legal and continuous stay. Provided, that the applicant has legal and continuous residence for two years immediately prior to the submission within the territory of the EU member country, where the application for the EC long-term residence permit is lodged.
The possibility to accumulate periods of residence in other Member States is not open to holders of the Dutch highly skilled migrant permit.
There is another big advantage for EU Blue Card holders: if the employee leaves the European Union, it is not considered an interruption of the five-year continuous legal stay (providing that this period is shorter than 12 consecutive months and does not exceed 18 months in total). These periods of absence are restricted to cases when the EU Blue Card Holder has returned to his country of origin to work as an employee or self-employed person, or to study or volunteer.
Holders of the Dutch highly skilled migrant permit are not allowed to have any interruption in their five years of legal and continuous stay to qualify for the EC long-term residence permit.
The ICT permit does not count towards obtainment of the EU long-term residence permit. However, the ICT permit may count towards obtaining the Dutch national residence permit after five years of continuously holding a valid residence permit. As that the ICT permit is issued for a maximum of three years, it must be switched to another type of permit after three years. This would enable the employee to build up five years of residence, enabling them to apply for the Dutch permanent residence permit.