Saudi Arabia has a very lengthy and complicated entry process which will be described in summary form here and further details are always supplied when an individual decides to take up a an offer of employment in Saudi Arabia. On average you can expect to wait up to eight weeks for your application to be processed.
When you have been offered a job in Saudi Arabia your future employer will be responsible for obtaining your work visa authorization code.
Your employer or Recruitment company will then send you your employment contract along with booklets and information explaining the Visa application process to you and what they will require to process it for you.
1. A Medical Report for the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Canada or for whatever country you reside in.
2. The Embassy Authorization Memo
3. A Visa Application Form
4. Statement of Religion Form
5. Note about Police Clearance
The first thing you should do is go and see your doctor and get the medical exam completed as there will be lab results required that could take time and they all need to be returned within three months to be considered valid. Your doctor must also complete the official form. Then the form needs to be verified by the College of Physicians and Surgeons or by the equivalent authorizing body in your region. If posting the form to them you might also want to give them the address to send them to and the required postage costs so that they can then post it directly onto Saudi Arabia. The form will also specify all the medical tests that will be necessary.
Make sure your passport is valid and has two blank pages and you have signed it. If there are Israel stamps on your passport you will not be given a Visa to Saudi Arabia.
All original qualification certificates will have to be sent to your recruiter for verification. You will need your high school diploma or your equivalent and all your documents must be legible in French or English. If you have lost anything you will need an official letter on headed paper with all your qualification details stated on it from the original awarding body along with a copy of the original certificate. You also need to send a letter from a previous employer from your country matching the details on your contract of employment.
Once you have got to this stage you will need to put together and send all the documentation required. It is best to keep copies of everything and send it by courier to be sure of its arrival and to save time.
To do so, you must qualify under an immigration category as a permanent resident.
1. Results of mandatory medical tests and if any of them are not ready confirm you will fax and post them on at a later date.
2. The stamped Medical Report completed by your doctor and stamped by the Physician and Surgeons in your region or whatever is their equivalent.
3. The Employment contract which you will have signed
4. The signed Saudi Arabia Embassy Authorization note
5. A name change document if required
6. Your Passport
7. A completed visa application form and if you have opted to convert to Islam the conversion certificate
8. Six color passport photographs
9. A Police Clearance Certificate dated within three months of the current date.
10. A letter of No Objection, you will also require a letter of release if you have ever worked somewhere else in Saudi Arabia.
After this provided everything is in order it will normally then take approximately ten days for your visa to be issued.
When your Visa is issued the Embassy in Saudi Arabia will stamp the inside of your passport and return it to your recruitment company. They will then subsequently apply for your airline tickets and in due course they will then courier them to you along with returning your original documents. You are now ready to travel.
As Dubai hurtles into the 21st century at break neck speed, the demand for labor to sustain this rapid growth is exponentially increasing. With a burst in growth anticipated in almost all sectors driving the economy, the opportunity for employment is plentiful and thus the numbers of expats, both skilled as well as unskilled laborers, entering the country every year is on the rise.
Any foreign expat, who is not a UAE national, requires a residency visa to live and work in Dubai. The residency visa then allows employees to obtain a work permit or labor card, issued by the Ministry of Labor.
The majority of expats have already secured employment prior to arriving in Dubai and they do not have to deal with the relevant authorities for the work permit. The employer is required to take responsibility for the visa application process and applies to the relevant departments on behalf of the employee. Employers are also required, by law, to bear the financial costs related to the procurement of the visa.
There are different types of work permits required for employment in Dubai and these vary based on the type and duration of employment. The UAE government has tried to simplify the process of obtaining a visa but there are still several documents and legalities that must be conformed to. Below is a step-by-step guide on the application procedure.
In order to get a work permit, the employee must first be granted a residence visa, which is typically valid for a period of three years. There are different types of residence visas. The documents required for a residence visa include:
1. An application form, completely filled out
2. Several passport-size photographs. Specific photograph requirements for the application can be found here
3. Employee's original passport with a copy
4. Copy of a valid company card
5. Valid commercial license of the company
6. Application fee
7. Valid health certificate
8. Entry permit issued by the Ministry of Labor
Although a residence visa is not the same as a labor card, the employer usually applies for the visa on behalf of the employee.
A valid health certificate is required for the issuance of a residence permit; this requires applicants to undergo a health check at any government hospital or medical clinic. The test must be conducted once the applicant is in the country; tests from outside the country are not accepted.
The medical check includes a chest X-ray and blood tests to check for certain communicable diseases such as HIV/AIDS, leprosy, Hepatitis and tuberculosis. Positive results on any of these tests will result in a denial of the residence visa and immediate deportation. At present there is no appeals process for this in Dubai.
The first step towards getting your work permit is to get approval from the Ministry of Labor. The employer will apply for this on behalf of the employee. If the approval is for application in any of the free zones, approval must be granted before the employee enters the UAE. During this approval process, the Ministry of labor usually bases its decision by checking that there are no unemployed UAE citizens who are able to perform the relevant job.
Upon receipt of approval, the Ministry issues an Entry Permit visa (also known as a pink visa) which allows applicants to legally enter the UAE. This permit is valid for 2 months from the date of issue and allows the holder to remain in the UAE for a period of 30 days, extendable twice.
After the employee enters the country, the employer then begins the application process for the labor card. For free zone employment an ID card will be issued; both IDs and labor cards are typically valid for 2 years. Once the employee enters the country, he has sixty days in which to complete all the formalities required to get a residence visa. It is advisable to get these procedures done as soon as possible rather than waiting till the last moment.
The employee then needs to go to the Emirates ID service center after getting the relevant form typed up at any typing center. Original valid passport and valid entry permit are required.
The employer can now apply to the Immigration authorities for the residence visa; the employee needs to go to any of the government hospitals for their medical fitness tests. (See section on Medical requirements for Residence Visas). Certain professions also require employees to provide relevant educational qualifications which will be authenticated by the UAE embassy in your home country as well as the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the UAE.
Once the employer has the results of the medical fitness test, he can then go to the Department of Naturalization and Residency Dubai (DNRD) with all the supporting documents and the visa can be stamped on the employee's passport.
- Applicant's photographs
- Residency Visa
- Valid Passport (minimum six month validity required)
- Valid health certificate
- Three copies of the employment contract - one for the employer, one for the employee and one for the Ministry of Labor
- Education certificates and other evidence of professional qualifications
- Sponsoring company's valid trade license
A quick note to end: Visa requirements may be changed without updating relevant websites so applicants should always check with their respective consulates or embassies for the latest requirements.
In Qatar you need a visa to work in the country or if you are a partner or family member of someone who intends working there you will also need a visa. In order to process your visa you will need a Qatar national to act as your sponsor. As all businesses in Qatar are owned by citizens of Qatar it is normally your new employer who will also be your sponsor.
Once you have secured employment your new employer will apply for a NOC certificate for you and this will then be stamped onto your passport before entering Doha Airport. You must have this before you can enter the country. Once this is done you then need to apply for a residence Visa and this normally takes two to six weeks and if you have to leave the country during this period you will have to start all over again.
A residency visa lasts for two years but sometimes it may only be granted for six months. Renewing it is normally fairly straight forward once you do it before the old one expires. It is safest to keep track of your expiry date and submit your passport to renew your visa at least one month before it is required. You can also get the form at the post office but you must then fill it out in Arabic and include the appropriate documents and payment with the completed application form. You will then have to collect it when it is ready.
Sponsors are also obliged to make sure their sponsored individuals abide by local laws but if they don't they can and will be prosecuted accordingly. There is no alcohol allowed anywhere in Qatar. A working spouse can also sponsor his wife and children to gain entry into the country.
A medical is also required for entry into the country the company you work for will arrange this for you and let you know what you will require for the process. The Medical Commission is responsible for all medicals and they have specific queuing arrangements and separate areas for men and women. You will require QR100 for payment. Keep your receipt as you will need this for collecting your results.
You will have to have both a HIV and a TB test done. Your examination will also require an x-ray and a blood test. Before you leave check that you have had all the necessary tests completed. Normally results will be available within three days.
About a week after this you will be asked to go for finger prints of your fingers and palms. Your employer will then submit the results of your medical exam, your finger prints and your passport for your residency application. When this has been completed you will then need to go to the Immigration Department to pick it up yourself.
Kuwait Labour law specifies two types of work visas are
Article No 17 Public Sector Employees
Article No 18 Private sector Employees
Sponsoring Company/employer must apply for a work permit from the Ministry of Social Affairs & Labor . The documents required at the time of application are Copy of the employee's passport showing the sector, No objection Certificate from the General Administration of Criminal investigation at the Ministry of Interior.
After received the work visa the sponsor should send visa to the employee in his home country . The employee must provide a medical report form the Kuwait consulate recognised Clinics to prove that their general state of health is good and that they are free of specific epidemic diseases mainly tuberculosis or HIV/AIDS.
If there is no Kuwait embassy representation in the employee's home country, the sponsor will obtain an entry permit from the Ministry of Interior in Kuwait and have it sent to the employee