SAUDI ARABIA – Recent Changes for Foreign Workers

The Ministry of Labour and Social Development (MLSD) has recently made several significant changes to its rules for issuing block visas and work visas, to the “Nitaqat” Saudization system and to the expat levy.

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SAUDI ARABIA – Labour Market Testing Requirement Suspended

Effective immediately, the Saudi Ministry of Labor has suspended the requirement for companies intending to hire foreign nationals to first advertise jobs on the Taqat jobs portal before applying for block visas (expatriate quota).

At the same time, the Ministry has announced a fast track visa service for companies who have a high Saudization rate to be able to obtain visas immediately, and has allowed companies in the medium green saudization category to apply for block visas provided that it does not lower the company’s Saudization category. This was previously restricted to the high green and platinum categories only.

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SAUDI ARABIA – Labour Market Testing Requirement Suspended

This news alert was prepared with information provided by Innovation SA and Proven.

SAUDI ARABIA – Foreign nationals require a registered rental agreement for work permit renewal

Effective September 2018, foreign national residents looking to renew their work permits must have a rental contract authenticated and registered with the new Ejar online rental platform, according to an announcement by the Saudi Ministry of Labour and Social Development (MLSD) and the Ministry of Housing.

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Global Trends | 2017 Roundup of Significant Global Corporate Immigration Developments

In 2017, along with our sister company, Newland Chase, we published hundreds of client and public updates on significant changes to immigration policy impacting international business in dozens of countries, via newsletters, white papers, client briefs, industry articles, and social media.

While it would be near impossible to summarise in one document all of last years’ changes in immigration policy from around the world, linked below is a brief overview of what we consider to be among the most significant developments in corporate immigration from around the world, grouped by region and country.

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Global Trends | 2017 Roundup of Significant Global Corporate Immigration Developments

SAUDI ARABIA – Saudi Companies with Five or Fewer Employees Are Exempt from Expanded Expat Fee – UPDATED

The Ministry of Labour and Social Development has announced that Saudi companies employing five people or fewer are exempt from the new monthly expat levy. Companies employing nine people or fewer must pay the levy for the number of employees exceeding five.

UPDATE

For work permits issued prior to 1 January 2018 and still valid during the year 2018, the Ministry of Labour will send the employer an invoice stating the outstanding amount of expatriate fee payable due to the increased fees for 2018. The outstanding amount must be paid within three months of 1 January 2018. Failure to pay on time may result in penalties on the employer and the employee, at the discretion of the authorities.

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SAUDI ARABIA – Riyadh Chamber of Commerce Offers Online Attestation Services

Effective immediately, the Riyadh Chamber of Commerce has launched online attestation (certification) services for some documents.

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SAUDI ARABIA – Riyadh Chamber of Commerce Offers Online Attestation Services

This news alert was prepared using information provided by Proven.

SAUDI ARABIA – Validity of Block Visas Reduced to One Year

Effective immediately, companies in Saudi Arabia will have to utilize their block visas more quickly in order to hire foreign employees. The Saudi Ministry of Labor has announced that it is reducing the validity period of its block visas from two years to one year.

Thus, companies now have just one year to recruit and hire the needed foreign workers before their block visa automatically expires.

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