Employers are typically responsible for sponsoring foreign workers in Oman, which means your company needs to know how to get a work visa in the country to stay compliant. For everything from acquiring an employment visa to come into Oman to getting a residence card and permit, you must ensure that your employees have everything they need. This process is a challenge for many companies that also need to handle all the other details of a global expansion.
Types of Oman Work Visas
Oman has a variety of visa types available, including the following:
- Visit visa: This is the most standard visa option for basic entry into Oman. All foreign nationals must obtain a valid entry visa to come into the country unless they’re from a Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) country. Visit visas also come in their own types, including business, tourist, and family visit visas. They’re valid for six months from the issue date, and stays vary depending on visa type.
- Scientific research visa: These visas are for foreigners entering Oman specifically for scientific research. Local specialized authorities must request them on behalf of the applicant.
- Employment visa: Employers obtain employment visas on behalf of foreign workers age 21 or older. Both the employee and employer must meet specific requirements to apply. The visa is valid for two years from the date of entry.
- Investors’ visa: This visa is meant for foreigners who want to invest in Oman. It requires approval by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
- Family joining visa: A wife and any children of a foreign employee who are under the age of 21 can apply for the family joining visa. This visa requires a certificate from the Ministry of Interior to confirm marriage status. Family visas expire when the employee’s residence permit expires.
Requirements to Obtain a Work Visa in Oman
The entire process of sponsoring a foreign worker is time-consuming and requires many documents. Since you, as the employer, will handle the process, you should prepare these documents ahead of time to avoid delays:
- An Omanization plan showing the positions you’ll fill with Omani nationals
- A list of desired expatriate employees, including positions and genders
- Copies of all foreign employee passports with at least six months’ validity
- Employees’ relevant certificates and qualifications
- Transcripts from educational institutions
- Attestation from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Oman Embassy in the employee’s native country
- A copy of the labor license issued by the Ministry of Manpower
- An invitation or job offer letter from your registered company
- A medical certificate from an approved clinic based on the employee’s home country
- Two recent passport photos
Steps for How to Get a Work Visa in Oman
The first step to obtaining Oman working visas for employees is procuring a labor license from the Ministry of Manpower. You will need to submit an application form to the specialized directorate in the Ministry of Manpower. Doing so will give you clearance to hire expatriates. Next, you can send a letter of invitation to all employees who satisfy the conditions and quotas for the labor clearance.
Every expatriate you’re sponsoring needs an individual Oman work visa. You’ll submit the applications to the Immigration Department of the Royal Oman Police through a one-stop source. After the visa is cleared for the employee, they’ll need to attain a residence card to legally live in Oman while employed. This step will take place once your employee enters Oman. Within 30 days of arrival, they must go to the Civil Status Department of the Royal Oman Police to obtain their residence card.
Other Important Factors to Consider
If an employee ever needs to change jobs, you terminate the contract prematurely, or the contract expires, the expatriate must leave the country for at least two years unless they get a No Objection Certificate (NOC). This document will show that you, as the sponsoring employer, and the government do not have issues with the employee working in the country.
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