Bureaucratic Technicality Could Force Sweden’s Three-Time Barista Champion Out

Steve Moloney. Photo: Barista League/Liv Omsen

After seven years of living in Sweden, winning the title of Swedish National Barista Champion three years in a row, and creating the culture-shifting Barista League, Steve Moloney may be forced to leave his adopted country. Born in Australia, Moloney moved to Sweden for a yearlong working holiday in 2012 that turned into a permanent residence. He was granted residence in 2017 on an employee visa, but filed as a “sole trader” after successfully establishing the Barista League. According to The Local, the Swedish government recently rejected Moloney’s work permit application because the application is being treated as a new application, rather than an extension, thus meaning that he would have to return to Australia in less than two weeks and re-apply, which could take years before being approved. Moloney criticized the Migration Agency’s lack of clarity and refusal to answer questions about the process. As of now, the government has allowed Moloney a weeklong extension to appeal the decision.