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Employee/ Personnel Relocation to Saudi Arabia

Employee/ Personnel Relocation to Saudi Arabia

Employee relocation in Saudi Arabia is subject to the same requirements applicable to any worker coming to render their services to a Saudi employer. This means that intra-company transfers are not covered by specific regulations. However, there are also certain exceptions to this this rule.

Below, our Saudi company formation specialists explain the procedure related to personnel relocation to Saudi Arabia. We are at your disposal with tailored support related to intra-company transfers.

How to transfer employees to Saudi Arabia

Employers or sponsors are responsible for securing an employee’s entry into Saudi Arabia with an work visa (valid for 14 to 90 days) and for submitting an application for a residence permit later on (Iqama).

Employee relocation to Saudi Arabia is also possible through:

  • a business visa;
  • a temporary work visa;
  • a group employment visa;
  • a seasonal employment visa.

These are seldom used for personnel relocation to Saudi Arabia as they imply meeting specific criteria. However, when the case requires, our local lawyers can help you apply for such visas.

Conditions to obtain a work visa for intra-company transfer purposes

A potential employee must possess the following in order to get an employment visa:

  • professional or academic qualifications that could not be found on the Saudi labor market;
  • an employment agreement with a Saudi national, a Saudi firm, or a foreign organization having permission to conduct business in Saudi Arabia;

Also, employers must demonstrate to the Saudi government that no Saudi natives are available to fill the post.

The documents to be filed to obtain a visa for personnel relocation to Saudi Arabia imply:

  • the applicant’s passport;
  • the work agreement;
  • the letter from the employer that will serve as sponsorship proof;
  • information about one’s qualifications;
  • a clean criminal record.

Our agents can offer assistance in filing for work visas for transferring employees to Saudi Arabia.

Job mobility service in Saudi Arabia

One of the ways through employee relocation to Saudi Arabia can occur as in other countries is the job mobility service. However, this procedure implies meeting specific requirements on both employee’s and employer’s ends.

Here are the conditions the expat worker must meet in order to be eligible for personnel relocation to Saudi Arabia:

  • the foreign professional must be covered by the Kingdom’s Labor Law;
  • after arriving in Saudi Arabia for the first time, one year of service must be completed with the current employer;
  • the employee must also have a written employment agreement;
  • the new employer submitted a job offer via the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development’s website;
  • a request for a transfer of services, along with a notice period, must be communicated to the current employer.

Apart from these, the employer must also meet specific criteria.

If you need support in Labor Law matters, our Saudi lawyers can advise you.

Requirements to be met by Saudi employers when transferring employees

Personnel relocation to Saudi Arabia also implies completing several formalities by the employing company, among which:

  • the employer’s business is qualified to apply for visas under the laws and regulations;
  • the employer has also adhered to the rules of the Wage Protection Program;
  • the Saudi enterprise also meets the labor contract paperwork and digitalization program’s rules;
  • the employer has adhered to the program for self-evaluation.

According to recent data:

  • at the level of 2022, the total population of Saudi Arabia is 35.84 million;
  • immigrants represented 38.3% of the country’s population, according to data from 2019;
  • the largest ethnic groups are Arabs with 90% and Afro-Asians with 10%.

If you are a foreign investor and run a business in Saudi Arabia and you want to know more about what these requirements entail, do not hesitate to ask our local officers about them. We are at your disposal with various legal services.