Expats must pay dependents’ fees before Iqama renewal or re-entry visa: Passports Department

exit/re-entry visas for expatriates and the renewal of residence permits will not be made unless fees levied on dependents of foreign workers are paid in advance. (AFP)
Updated 02 July 2017

Expats must pay dependents’ fees before Iqama renewal or re-entry visa: Passports Department

RIYADH: The General Directorate of Passports of the Ministry of Interior (MoI) said that the issuance of exit/re-entry visas for expatriates and the renewal of residence permits will not be made unless fees levied on dependents of foreign workers are paid in advance.
Government agencies including banks have either updated or are updating their technical platforms for accepting these fees.
Responding to many inquires received on its Twitter account, the Passports Department said that fees levied on the head of the family “should be paid before issuance of exit/re-entry visa or renewal of residence permits.” The new fee for dependents of foreign workers in Saudi Arabia went into force July 1, which was announced by the Ministry of Finance last year in a step to balance in the budget.
In December 2016, the Saudi Council of Ministers passed a series of decisions aimed to increase state revenues to offset the impact of the fall in oil prices. According to the decision, the fees start at SR100 ($27) for each dependent per month and it will increase to SR200 after July 2018, and SR300 and SR400 in 2019 and 2020 respectively.
Based on government estimates, fees on expatriate’s dependents will yield some SR1 billion by the end the current year, while fees on dependents and levies on foreign workers at private sector companies will achieve SR24bn, SR44bn and SR65bn in 2018, 2019 and 2020, respectively. The fees will be paid annually when a residence permit is sent for renewal or the expatriate worker seeks a re-entry visa.
According to the local media, dependents are categorized as follows: A wife (or wives), sons, daughters, parents, wife’s father or mother, house workers, and drivers who are registered under the name of a sponsor, namely expatriates working in commercial companies.
The Saudi government plans to achieve a balanced budget by 2020. In a briefing to reporters last December, Saudi Finance Minister Mohammed Al-Jadaan said the fees do not apply to domestic workers employed by Saudi citizens.
He also ruled out imposition of an income tax on Saudis, foreigners or company revenues. The Kingdom has not levied any fees on remittances sent by about 11 million expatriates currently living and working in the Kingdom.


Six winners in Riyadh falcon beauty contest swoop on $800,000 prize

Updated 35 min 2 sec ago

Six winners in Riyadh falcon beauty contest swoop on $800,000 prize

  • The beauty pageant, or Mazayen competition, was part of the festival’s second edition

RIYADH: Six winners were crowned in a falcon beauty pageant at the King Abdul Aziz Falconry Festival at Malham, north of Riyadh.

The beauty pageant, or Mazayen competition, was part of the festival’s second edition and was judged in two categories — Farkh (birds under 12 months of age) and Qurnass (older than 12 months).

Falconer Khaled Nasser Al-Hajjri won three first places in the Farkh category with his falcons Hasheem, Merheb and Tamam scoring 92 percent, 85 percent and 75 percent, respectively. 

In the Qurnass category, Salem Nasser Al-Hajjri’s falcon Zandan won first place with 92 percent, Sultan Fahd Al-Damer’s falcon Nyoom second place with 81 percent, and Dahy Ali Al-Mansoury’s Al-Qayed third place with 72 percent.

The Saudi Falcons Club had specified seven criteria for winners in the beauty competition, including head and shoulders, upper part of the chest, back, leg and claw, and color. The falcon with the highest score out of 100 was awarded first place in each category. Prize money in the Mazayen competition totaled SR3 million ($800,000) with the winner in each round receiving SR300,000, second place SR200,000 and third place SR100,000.

As part of the beauty contest, the festival will include a final round for the Qurnass category. Competition in the 400-meter Milwah event will continue until Monday.