KUWAIT MINISTERIAL DECISION AMENDS EXPAT RESIDENCY LAW

Two-month residency leeway for foreigners

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Work permit fee exemptions laid out

KUWAIT CITY, April 20: Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Defense, and acting Minister of Interior Sheikh Fahad Yousef Al-Sabah issued a ministerial decision amending some provisions of Ministerial Resolution No. 957/2019 on the executive regulations of the Foreigners’ Residency Law and its amendments, reports Al-Anba daily. Article One of the decision states that Article 12 of Ministerial Resolution No. 957/2019 is amended as follows: ”A foreigner who entered the country by Clause Nos. 1-7 and 14 of Article Four of this decision may remain here without a residence permit for a period not exceeding two months from the date of his entry.

Procedures must be initiated to obtain regular or temporary residency within this period. “Regular residence data are recorded in the civil identification card issued by the Public Authority for Civil Information (PACI), while data related to the temporary residency stipulated in Article 14 of this decision are recorded by the mechanism specified by the Residency Affairs General Department in the Interior Ministry.”

Article Two mandates the concerned undersecretary to implement this decision, which shall take effect from the date of its publication in the Official Gazette. Meanwhile, the Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Defense, Acting Minister of Interior, and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Public Authority for Manpower (PAM) Sheikh Fahad Al-Yousef issued a ministerial decision regarding the mechanism for granting work permits and the transfer of migrant workers recruited with work permits and the prescribed fees, reports Al-Seyassah daily.

The decision stipulates the following:

Article 1 – The employer must obtain work permits according to an estimate of need after obtaining the approval of the concerned department of PAM. An additional fee of KD 150 will be collected for each work permit by the provisions of this decision.

Article 2 – The following categories are exempted from paying the additional fee referred to in Article One of this decision:

1 – Companies wholly owned by the government.
2 – Hospitals, dispensaries, medical centers, and medical clinics licensed by the Ministry of Health.
3 – Universities and private colleges.
4 – Private schools.
5 – Foreign investors approved by the Investment Promotion Authority.
6 – Sports clubs, federations, public benefit associations, cooperative societies, trade unions, foundations, and charitable endowments.
7 – Agricultural plots licensed by the Public Authority for Agricultural Affairs and Fish Resources (PAAAFR).
8 – Fishing.
9 – Barns, grazing sheep and camels.
10 – Industrial establishments and small industries.

Article 3 – In cases where it is permissible to transfer workers from one employer to another by the procedures in force at PAM, the transfer of a migrant worker who was brought in with a work permit to another employer is permitted by the provisions of this decision, which is before the lapse of three years and for a fee of KD 300. The ban imposed on the movement of labor outside the sectors referred to in the decisions issued by PAM will continue by its procedures.

Article 4 – The Director General of PAM may issue administrative decisions and circulars regarding the implementation of the provisions of this decision, particularly the conditions and controls for granting or suspending permits.

Article 5 – The Board of Directors of PAM must direct its affairs to prepare a study on the effects of implementing this decision before one year has passed from the date of its implementation, and present it to the concerned minister along with any recommendations that the board deems appropriate.

Article 6 – – Suspending the provisions of ministerial Resolution No. 12/2017 regarding adding fees to employers who meet the conditions in the event of recruiting workers over the number allocated to them.
– Suspending the provisions of Ministerial Resolution No. 26/2018 regarding the fees applied to employers holding second-class work permits.
– Suspending the provisions of Chapter One regarding “Categories of Permits” from part two of the list of rules and procedures for granting work permits referred to, during the validity period of this decision mentioned in Article 7 below.
– Excluding government contracts and projects and small and medium enterprises for holders of licenses registered with the Business Owners Service Department are excluded from the application of the provisions of this decision.

Article 7 – This decision shall be effective starting from June 1, 2024 for one year, and shall be published in the official gazette. The concerned authorities shall be informed and shall implement what is stated therein.

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