Kuwait to halt visa transfer from public to private sector

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Kuwait announced a ban on transferring government workers to the private sector, local media reported.

The Public Authority for Manpower has also decided to enforce restrictions on the transfer of dependent visas to work visas, for those working in the private sector.

Although government sector employees are barred from transferring over to the private sector, four groups of people are exempt from the transfer ban: Kuwaiti women’s husbands and children, wives of Kuwaitis, Palestinians with travel documents and those in specialized technical professions, like doctors, nurses and other technical fields.

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In regards to transferring one’s residency from a dependent visa to a work visa, Al Moussa pointed out that only four groups of people are eligible: husbands and children of Kuwaiti women, those born in Kuwait, Palestinians with travel documents and those that have a secondary degree diploma from a Kuwaiti educational establishment.

There are three types of residency visas in Kuwait: work visa, domestic visa and dependent visa. The dependent visa allows expats residing in Kuwait to sponsor their family members, although various restrictions apply.

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Prior to this decision, it was possible for an expat to switch their residency from a dependent visa to a work visa. In order to do so, the person must hold a dependent visa for a minimum of one year before applying for a work visa from the Ministry of Social and Economic Affairs.

As for transferring private sector workers to the government, Al Moussa explained that employees should comply with procedures followed by the Public Authority for Manpower and the Civil Service Commission.

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