Saudi Arabia

Green Card Style “Special Privilege Iqama” Within 90 Days

The Green Card-style Saudi “Special Privilege Iqama” system will be put into effect within 90 days after its approval by the Council of Ministers on Tuesday.

The Special Privilege Iqama Center has been entrusted with the task  to prepare and complete the Executive Regulations of the Special Privilege Iqama Law, within 90 days, paving the way for its issuance.

The specially set up center is assigned to regulate and manage everything related to the new Iqama, enjoys financial and administrative independence, and will be under the supervision of a ministerial committee, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) said in a report.

The Executive Regulations will include all the terms and conditions and procedures for foreigners, including those expatriates residing in the Kingdom or those coming from outside, to obtain the special  iqama, as well as the privileges for the two types of iqamas— one for an unlimited period and the other for one-year validity with a provision of renewal.

The center will announce the details related to the Executive Regulations, and the mechanism of submitting applications and other relevant matters, the agency said.

Last Wednesday, the Shoura Council passed a law for the new “green card-style”
“Special Privilege Iqama” for foreign entrepreneurs, investors and skilled expatriates. The law will ensure  benefits for foreigners from the new residency scheme, which will not require a Saudi sponsor or employer.

According to the law, the “Special Privilege Iqama” will be offered to highly skilled expatriates who will benefit from added advantages including the ability to recruit workers, own property and transport, and enter and exit the Kingdom without a sponsor.

The permits will also include family status so that holders can issue visit visas to relatives.