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Saudi Arabia asks foreign nationals to get digital iqama

RIYADH: Authorities in Saudi Arabia have directed foreign nationals in the kingdom to immediately acquire a new iqama through an online portal and application of Absher.

According to local media reports, the passport department of Saudi Arabia has directed the foreign nationals to get their digital iqamas using the website and application of Absher.

The passport department said that digital iqama would serve as an alternate for those not having an iqama card as the former could also be saved in a mobile phone.

On January 02, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) announced an expected amendment in its resident permit fee structure and periods for individuals and their families working as employees while saying it will scrap Kafeel system.

The Ministry of Human Resource and Social Development of KSA noted that plans to change stricter rules are underway and the ministry is reconsidering its regulations to extend relaxation to foreign employees.

According to the details, the KSA media reported labor policy secretary for the ministry addressing their chambers of trade and industries workshop wherein he said his ministry is taking notice of fee levy on international employees.

We are considering changing yearly fee structure into quarterly which is likely to address a number of issues faced by private sector in the country.

Read More: High-level Saudi delegation to visit Pakistan soon: Qureshi

Iqama renewal fees, he noted, is paid by the employer, and noted that after reforms in the labor policies, the kafeel system will be axed and replaced with an agreement between employer and the employee instead.

The secretary further said his ministry rolled out labor reforms on November 4 last year which will remain in force until March 14, according to which if the employee chooses to change his employer or job contract before the agreement of two years, he will have to pay the penalty as enshrined in the new policies.

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