Updated November 2023
Kuwait has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the world and no personal income taxes, making it an appealing labor market for expats. Construction, engineering, information technology, and other sectors offer numerous job prospects.
People wishing to live and work in Kuwait must first understand how to secure a Kuwait work visa and residency permission. We’ve compiled all of the necessary information for obtaining your Kuwait work visa below.
Important note: According to the latest report in May 2023, Kuwait has stopped issuing work and entry visas to Filipinos on the instructions of Interior Minister Sheikh Talal Al-Khaled Al-Sabah. The reason for this action is the Philippines’ failure to adhere to the labor agreement signed by both countries in May 2018. The resumption of visa issuance is conditional upon the Philippines’ commitment to fulfilling the terms of the agreement.
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Kuwait work visa – latest news
The Ministry of Interior has stopped transferring expats’ residency permits from government to private sector. This applies to those who reached the legal work age or resigned. Government ministries are prioritising citizens’ employment and choosing to refrain from extending contracts for expatriates who reach the legal working age of 60, to substitute them. Over 40,000 expats were deported this year for residency violations, labour issues, moral violations, and legal obligations.
What is a Kuwait work visa?
A Kuwait work visa is a type of visa issued by the Kuwaiti government that allows an individual to enter and work in Kuwait. This visa is typically obtained by individuals who have been offered employment in Kuwait and need to secure the necessary authorization to work and reside in the country.
The process of obtaining a Kuwait work visa typically involves obtaining an offer of employment, obtaining sponsorship from a Kuwaiti employer, and completing various forms and procedures with the Kuwaiti government.
Kuwait work visa required documents
A Kuwait work visa, also known as an employment visa, is necessary for foreign individuals who wish to work in Kuwait. It requires a job offer from either a private company or a government organization. The employer must apply for the work permit or visa on behalf of the employee.
The requirements are as follows:
- Valid passport with a minimum of two (2) years prior to expiration date
- One completed current visa application form as issued by Kuwait Ministry of Foreign Affairs
- One passport-size photo
- HIV test (AIDS test)
- Health Certificate: Obtained from the local doctor certifying that the patient is in good health and free from contagious diseases. Lab test results for the following: hepatitis B & C, malaria, filariasis, syphilis and chest X-ray for tuberculosis
- No Criminal Record
- The work permit
Upon submission of the necessary documents, the employee will receive a “No Objection Certificate” (NOC) which permits them to enter Kuwait. Upon their arrival, they will be granted a residency visa. After 30 days of obtaining the residency visa, the employee may apply for a Kuwait Civil ID.
Kuwait work visa application
The employer must apply for a work permit from the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor. Here are the necessary steps:
- The employer must apply for a work permit from the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor, submitting the employee’s personal information, passport copy, and NOC
- Upon receiving the work visa/permit, the employer will send it along with the NOC to the employee
- After the employee has received the 2 documents, they have to undergo a medical test in their home country. The test has to be done at a clinic recognized by the Kuwaiti Consulate
- The Ministry of Foreign Affairs will send a copy of the work permit to the Kuwait embassy in the employee’s home country. The employer should also provide the employee with a copy of the work permit
The Kuwait Ministry of Foreign Affairs will forward a copy of the work permit to the Kuwait embassy in the employee’s home country.
If there is no Kuwait embassy in the employee’s home country, the work permit and NOC must be submitted to the Ministry of Interior.
Kuwait work visa fees
The price of a Kuwait work visa may vary between countries. However, to give you an idea, the Kuwait work visa price is USD 175 for US citizens (plus USD 25 for the police clearance validation).