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No more grace periods for residency violators: Maarafi

Major General Talal Maarafi
Major General Talal Maarafi

KUWAIT: Director of the Residency Affairs Department at the Ministry of Interior (MoI) Major General Talal Maarafi announced that the project of establishing a special company to hire domestic workers is almost complete and it is expected to become operational in six months. He also stressed that the project would put an end to domestic labor offices’ monopoly in the local market and create competition that would eventually help control domestic labor prices.

On another concern, Maarafi strongly denied that MoI intends to grant any further grace periods for residency law violators. “That is something from the past,” he underlined, noting that the recent security inspections in various areas made considerable numbers of residency law violators legalize their statuses and pay fines. “Violators will have to either legalize their statuses or leave,” he underlined.

Responding to a question about Syrian residents in Kuwait, Maarafi stressed that violators would be given a chance to legalize their stay in Kuwait and stressed that they would not be exempt from paying fines. “This only applies to Syrians, while other nationalities have to pay the fine and leave,” he explained. Maarafi added that a new project was being studied concerning issuing special residency IDs for expats and cancelling residency stickers in passports in a bid to prevent sponsors from withholding passports. “According to this project, a worker will only be allowed to leave the country after handing over his residency ID,” he added.

Responding to a question about the new fees to be imposed on expats, Maarafi explained that expats would pay KD 20 instead of KD 10 for each residency year. He also explained that instead of paying KD 200 for a parent’s residency, expats would pay KD 300 a year. Maarafi also explained that family visit visa validity was limited to one month except for wives and children, who get three-month visas. He added that in a bid to control the number of senior visitors who arrive to receive medical treatment in public hospitals, a new ‘medical treatment visa’ would be issued for people older than 50 after paying reasonable health insurance. – Al-Jarida

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