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Visit to work permit

My friend is coming to Kuwait on a visit visa. Now he wants to work here in Kuwait ... is it possible to change the visit visa to work permit.

Name withheld

Answer: First of all, the visit visas can’t be changed to work permits at all. The government stopped doing this over two years ago and hasn’t changed the decision on the issue so far. This is for normally or ordinary visit visas but the case is different for commercial visit visas.

The government had opened a “window” in this regard some of the those on commercial visit visas could change their status to work permit if they the conditions set by the government.

This “window” was, however, closed on March 31 and no further decision on this subject has been issued. In this regard it would be appropriate to look at the following statement of a senior government official. “The Assistant Undersecretary for Labor Affairs at the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor Jamal Al- Dousari says the deadline for transferring commercial visa to work permit in the private sector is end of March, stressing that the ministry will not extend this deadline under any circumstances. “Al Dousari declared that the ministry has been coordinating closely with the General Immigration Department at the Ministry of Interior to amend the status of expatriate workers who are in the country on commercial visit visas and are interested in transferring their expired visas to work permits in the private sector.

He indicated the government’s commitment to eliminate the phenomena related to Residency Law violations. “Al-Dousari declared that the concerned committee will set new regulations for the transfer after the given deadline”. Kuwait’s Minister for Social Affairs and Labor Thekra Al-Rashidi also said recently that Kuwait had suspended, from April 1,2014, transfer of commercial visit visa to work permits to organize Kuwait’s labor market and also address the country’s demographic balance.

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