Immigration and employment of expatriates

Indonesia issues a range of different classes of visa depending on the purpose of a foreigner’s visit. Short visit visas valid for 60 days may be issued on arrival at an official entry point to passport holders from most developed and neighbouring countries. The passport’s validity should be at least six months.

Business visas may be issued for business visits not including work. Business visas are issued by Indonesian embassies overseas, based on a letter of invitation from the party to be visited. Business visas may be renewed, once in the country, for up to a maximum of six months. Foreigners intending to take up employment in Indonesia, together with any foreign dependents, should apply for a KITAS or semi‐permanent residence visa. While much of the preparatory work is done in Indonesia, the visas are issued by embassies overseas based on a temporary stay visa, or ‘VITAS’, issued by the immigration authorities in Jakarta. A KITAS visa is issued for a year, but may be renewed for up to four years after which a fresh application is required.

Work permits
All foreigners planning to work in Indonesia must obtain a work permit in addition to a KITAS visa. Work permits are issued by the Department of Manpower approximately concurrently with the VITAS visa. Employment of foreigners must be in the context of an approved manpower plan. Many expatriates are employed as technical advisers. The BKPM will approve a certain number of positions for expatriates as contained in the investment application.

Other requirements
All foreign residents must also hold a ‘police pass’. Work permit holders must pay in advance an annual training levy of USD 1,200 before issue or renewal of the work permit. All foreigners holding a KITAS visa require a valid exit/re‐entry visa to leave and return to Indonesia. A final ‘exit permit only’ is required when a work permit is to be cancelled or will not be renewed.

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