In practice, companies often operate in several projects in different regions of Kazakhstan. If necessary, the employer sends employees from one site to another under a business trip and an employment contract. We are often asked the question: is it possible to send foreign workers in this way and what must be observed for this?
According to the current Rules*, a permit to attract foreign labor (hereinafter – a work permit) is issued by the local executive body in the region where the employer invites a foreigner to work. For example, the LLP is registered in Almaty, but the actual work will be performed on the Customer's project in Atyrau region. In this case, the employer applies for a work permit to the Office for the Coordination of Employment and Social Programs of Atyrau region. The issued permit will be valid only for Atyrau region and the employee can work in this region.
At the same time, the Rules allow sending the foreign employee on the business trip to an organization located on the territory of another administrative-territorial unit. Important condition is that such business trip should not exceed a total of 90 calendar days during a calendar year.
If the business trip is expected to exceed 90 days, we always recommend that the employer obtains a work permit in advance in the region to which the employee is seconded. Firstly, the Rules do not prohibit obtaining a second permit in another region. Secondly, exceeding the business trip period can serve as a violation of the Rules, which may be followed by penalties for the employer (Article 519 of the Code of Administrative Offenses):
- small businesses – 100 MCI
- subjects of medium business – 200 MCI
- large business entities – 700 MCI**
In addition, p.24 of the Rules provides that if it is established that a foreign worker is involved without a permit (in our case, in another region), a work permit is not issued to the employer within twelve months. In other words, the company falls into the "black list", which entails the impossibility of attracting new foreign candidates to work in Kazakhstan. Only after 1 year, the employer who committed the violation is returned the right to attract foreign labor. *p.34 of the Rules and conditions for issuing and (or) extending permits to employers to attract foreign labor, as well as for the implementation of an intra-corporate transfer, approved by order of the acting Ministry of Health and Social Development of the Republic of Kazakhstan dated June 27, 2016 No. 559.
**1 MCI as of 2022 is 3.063 tenge.