Cases.
Visas to Kazakhstan

Recommendations on processing Kazakhstan visas
Here you can get acquainted with our case studies on processing of visas to Kazakhstan.
Case 1. WORK VISA PROCESSING WITHOUT DEPARTURE FROM KAZAKHSTAN. RE-REGISTRATION FROM VISA-FREE REGIME TO VISA REGIME
Situation. A new client submitted a request for visa support. The client has previously obtained work permits for foreign employees, citizens of Ukraine, by itself and the process took longer than expected.

The client asked to process work visas as quickly as possible since foreign employees were staying in Kazakhstan on visa-free regime and the client presumed that it would take much time for foreign employees to apply for visas abroad. The Company used to send its employees to Kiev in order to receive Kazakhstan visas. It was extremely inconvenient as in that case the Company had to bear expenses for air tickets, transfer and accommodation of a foreign employee and family members. Moreover, foreign employees spent much time for trips and interrupted their work.

Solution. We proposed another option of processing of work visas for foreign employees without departure from Kazakhstan. The client was duly informed about the processing time and that the procedure would take from 7 to 12 business days. We started the process on approval of the client. Our consultant prepared and submitted visa documents to the migration service department in accordance with the existing migration rules and recent changes. 2 weeks later we received and handed over the passports with work visas to the client.

Result. The client found the proposed option really attractive as visas were received in Kazakhstan and the Company did not have to bear employees' travel expenses. And most importantly, during visas procedure employees were legally staying in Kazakhstan without pauses in work.
Case 2. CAN FOREIGNERS WORK WITH A VISA-FREE REGIME?
Situation. The company involved foreign employees (US citizens) who periodically arrived to Kazakhstan under the visa-free regime and carried out work without a work permit. At the same time, foreigners were officially in the internal documentation as employees of the company, signed documents, had business cards and doorplates on the office doors with the positions held.

As a result, the first inspection by the labor inspectorate revealed the fact of illegal involvement of foreign labor. The company was imposed a fine and a one-year ban to invite foreign employees to Kazakhstan.

In this case, the employer would really be sure that the visa-free regime allows inviting foreign specialists to Kazakhstan without issuing any visa, including a working visa. In addition, if there is no need for a working visa, why it is required to draw up a work permit? The employer applied to us with this question.

Visa and work permit. First, let us determine the concepts.

VISA is a document that gives a foreigner the right to enter the territory of another country. By itself, a visa does not give a foreigner the right to work in a foreign country. This right should be provided by another official document – WORK PERMIT.

At the same time, any state can unilaterally abolish the requirement for issuing visas for citizens of specific countries, that is, establish a visa-free regime. For example, Kazakhstan in 2017, with the aim of increasing investment and tourism attractiveness, introduced a visa-free regime for 45 states. Citizens of these countries can arrive to the Republic of Kazakhstan without a visa and stay up to 30 days. The purpose of such trips can be tourism, business meetings, search for business partners, etc.

Therefore, if you invite a foreign citizen to work in Kazakhstan, regardless of whether a visa-free regime is in effect or not, you should get a work permit for it in advance. Then, based on the issued permit, it is required to issue a C3 "work" category visa for the foreigner invited for the period of validity of the permit itself.

Result. Our consultants conducted an audit of documents and explained to the employer the requirements for attracting foreign labor to Kazakhstan, defined the qualification criteria for each position for which specialists were required. Only after the expiry of the sanction, in accordance with the legislation, the work permits were obtained for foreign employees, and working visas were issued for their stay in Kazakhstan.
Case 3. FRENCH CITIZEN LEAVE AFTER THE EXPIRATION OF THE WORKING VISA
Situation. The foreign employee was in Kazakhstan on a working visa. However, he forgot about the date of its expiration, did not leave in time, and thus delayed his stay in the country. The client came to us with the question of what threatens and what to do in such a situation.

Decision. After reviewing the passport, we first noticed that the foreign employee last visited the country on July 4, i.e. a week before the expiry of the working visa - July 10. Considering that a foreigner is a subject of France, and for citizens of this country in Kazakhstan there is a visa-free regime with a permitted stay of 30 days, we offered the client the following:
  • consider the last arrival of a foreign employee as an entry by visa-free regime
  • send an employee outside the Republic of Kazakhstan not later than 30 days since the last entry, i.e. until August 3, or to extend his legal stay in the country
  • terminate the employment relationship with a foreign employee from July 10 - the expiration date of the work permit. (After this date, a foreigner, being in the country under a visa-free regime, is not entitled to carry out labor activities until a new permit is issued to him.)
  • entrust to one of the employees the obligation to control the entry and timely departure of foreign employees and their guests.

Result. Based on our consultations, the foreign employee safely left the country before the recommended deadline; thereby not violating the requirements of migration regulations and did not entail administrative sanctions on the company.

Later our consultants prepared a package of documents, issued a new permit for a foreigner, and he returned on a working visa.
C5 BUSINESS-IMMIGRANT VISA
Foreign citizens wishing to conduct business in Kazakhstan can open a company or join the founders of an existing Kazakh company. For this, a foreigner must apply for a business immigrant visa of the "C5" category.

Business immigrant is a foreign national who has arrived in Kazakhstan to carry out entrepreneurship activities.

Single entry C5 visa
Preliminary C5 visa is issued for a period up to 90 days with the right to stay for the entire period of validity of the visa.

According to the Procedure for issuing visas, the primary single-entry visa is issued only abroad in foreign institutions of the Republic of Kazakhstan.

What are the conditions for applying for a single-entry visa?
  1. legal age of the applicant;
  2. provision of a medical certificate confirming the absence of diseases that obstruct labor activity;
  3. health insurance;
  4. police clearance certificate;
  5. providing a certificate of the presence / absence of a ban on running business, issued in the country of citizenship or permanent residence.

What actions should a foreigner take after obtaining visa?
Within two months from the date of entry, it's required:
  1. to register the company in the Republic of Kazakhstan or join to the company's participants (shareholders);
  2. upon registration deposit the amount for the authorized capital to the bank.
Multiple entry C5 visa
The C5 visa is extended in the territory of the Republic of Kazakhstan by the migration service. Upon renewal, a multiple-entry visa is issued for a period of up to 2 years with the right to stay for the entire period of validity of the visa.

It is important to note that business immigrants, when extending a C5 visa, additionally submit to the Migration Service a request from the Akimats (regional governor's offices) of Kazakhstan.

Please consider the following:
  • If business-immigrants fail to fulfill their duties, the internal affairs bodies, based on the request of local executive bodies, decide to reduce the period of stay of business immigrants for the period for voluntary departure.
  • A foreigner who has not received a C5 visa is prohibited from carrying out business activities, creating a legal entity or becoming a member of the founders.
HOW TO PROCESS VISA FOR CHIEF EXECUTIVE OF THE COMPANY?
For performing labor activity in Kazakhstan a foreign chief executive (director) should obtain a relevant work permit in advance. Such work permit is issued for the first category for a period of 1, 2, 3 years with the right of extension for the same period. Work visa of C3 category is issued based on work permit accordingly.

However, according to the existing regulations, work permit is not required for the chief executive of the company in some cases. For example, if he/she works as:
1) Head of the Branch of Representative office of a foreign legal entity in Kazakhstan;
2) Director of the Kazakhstan legal entity with 100 % of foreign shares in the company;
3) Chief executive of the company which signed an investment contract with the Kazakhstan Government for more than 50 million US Dollars investments;
4) Director of the Kazakhstan company which carries out investment activities in the priority activities and which has signed a contract with the authorized investment body;
5) Is a citizen of the member states of the Eurasian Economic Union (Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Armenia and Belarus).

What type of visa should a foreign chief executive apply for in case of exemption from work permit? So, in order to enter or stay in the country, a foreigner should apply for:
  • C3 work visa – for foreign citizens specified in the above paragraphs 1-2.
  • A5 investor visa – for foreign citizens specified in paragraphs 3-4.
  • Temporary residence permit (RVP) – for the category of citizens specified in paragraph 5.

If you require any further information, please feel free to contact us.
BUSINESS VISA OF B2 CATEGORY
For what purposes of travel is B2 visa issued?
A visa is issued for the purpose of:
• installation, repair and maintenance of equipment
• provision of consulting or audit services

For how long is B2 visa issued and how long can you stay in Kazakhstan on a visa?
Single-entry visa is issued for up to 90 days with the right to stay up to 30 days.
Multiple-entry visa is issued for up to 180 days with the right to stay up to 90 days.

For how long is B2 visa issued and how long can you stay in Kazakhstan on a visa?
If you entered Kazakhstan on a multiple-entry visa, you can stay in the country continuously for up to 90 days within a 180-day period.
Or, if necessary, enter Kazakhstan for shorter periods during the validity of visa.

Total period of stay of a foreigner for business purposes in the RoK should not exceed 120 calendar days a year*. Over 120 days, we recommend obtaining work permit and work visa C3. According to the rules, you can change the category of B2 visa to work visa without leaving Kazakhstan.
*Appendix 2 to the Government Resolution No. 802 as 15.12.2016

What is required for B2 visa?
To apply for visa, the inviting party must contact the migration service. Main document when applying for a multiple-entry visa is a contract for the performance of work / provision of services.

Such contract must be concluded between the inviting party in Kazakhstan and a foreign company that sends foreign specialists to project in the RoK. Contract is not required when applying for B2 visa for citizens of 48 economically developed and politically stable states.

How long does it take to obtain B2 visa?
Consideration and approval of the visa invitation at the migration service takes on average 5-7 working days. Additionally, 5 working days are required to insert a visa at the RoK consular office in the foreigner's country of residence.

Where can B2 visa be obtained?
Business visa can be obtained at the Kazakhstan consulate in the country of your citizenship. In the absence of a consulate, B2 visa can be obtained upon arrival at the airport.
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