Bhutan Tightens Immigration Rules for Work Visa


According to Thinlay Wangchuk, the Director of Immigration’s Director General stated that 75 changes have been made to the existing 2012 policy. The statement from the department which is a part of the Ministry of Home and Cultural Affairs, Royal Government of Bhutan said the changes were effective immediately. The changes, which have been used as soft rules to experiment effects to the country since the last one and a half years, has been inducted as official policies by the Ministry.

The revised rules cover all industries in contrast to original percentage of around 60-70, as the Director the Ministry states. Currently, the requirement requires a relevant bachelor’s degree as minimum education qualifications. In addition, foreign workers need to have prior work experience of a minimum of three years in a relevant field to qualify to work in Bhutan.

Mr. Wangchuk said that many under qualified individuals are in higher positions and is affecting the country’s economy and growth. Currently the country hosts 48,299 foreign workers where minorities of 1,781 are in the professional and technical classification as managers, doctors, engineers and such. Of the rest the majority work as electricians, plumbers, painters, masons, drivers and such. The rest blue workers occupy positions as cooks, domestic help, accountants, hospital staff and such.

New rules also affect the education sector in the mountain country. Foreign students in Bhutan have to provide appropriate documentation towards evidence of monetary resources to meet course fee, maintenance and accommodation requirements without banking on employment, public finds or similar activities. There is no post study work visa accommodation in the changed policy. This policy also extends to short and long term workers.

Unless specified by the Ministry, workers that who do not work in relevant fields have to stay outside Bhutan for six months before applying for re-entry after concluding three years of stay.

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Original Source: Kuenselonline

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