DICA Tightens the Requirements of Seeking DICA’s Recommendation for the Extension of Foreigners’ Stay Permits, Work Permits and Entry VisasSeptember 30, 2022
The Directorate of Investment and Company Administration (the “DICA”) issued an announcement dated 15 September 2022 with respect to the changes in the process of seeking DICA’s recommendation for foreigners’ visa renewal or extension with effect from 14 September 2022.
The DICA has, by this announcement, tightened up on its requirements of the application process for DICA’s recommendation relating to foreign employees’ visa renewal or extension. Of such new requirements, the following are the main key points that our attention be paid to:
- Companies must have been incorporated with the DICA for at least one year before seeking the DICA’s recommendation for visa and stay permit extension.
- In the case of the companies that have been suspended or struck off due to their failure to file an annual return with the DICA, the application of such companies for recommendation will only be accepted and reviewed after one year period following their remedy for their failure.
- Request for the DICA’s recommendation relating to the extension of foreign employees’ stay permit, work permit, or multiple entry visa must be made at least 90 to 120 days prior to their visa expiration dates.
With the new requirements above, newly established companies will not be able to seek the DICA’s recommendation for renewal of their foreign employees’ visas, stay permits, or work permits. This implies that newly incorporated companies are not able to hire expat employees within a year from the date of incorporation.
Companies that employ the foreign employees must also provide certain supporting documents and information, some of which are the foreign employees’ position; job description together with his/her educational or professional qualification certificate or other similar certificate. Although this announcement states no detailed criteria in respect of foreign employee’s qualification, foreign employees should have at least a diploma or a degree, otherwise the application for DICA’s recommendation may not be accepted. Other than that requirement, there are no new changes in other required documents.