As part of Vision 2030, Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman is working to boost the economy of Saudi Arabia and make it a hub connecting the three continents of Africa, Europe and Asia. According to the World Bank, the total Saudi population in 2019 stands at 34.14 million, representing a 1.93% increase from 2018. With the premium residency scheme and an increase in the number of expats in the kingdom, the Saudi population is only expected to continue to grow in the coming years.
To get premium residency in the kingdom, what you need is a Saudi green card.
What Is A Saudi Green Card?
In June 2019, the Council of Ministers of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia introduced the Saudi green card. The Premium Residency Center is now accepting online application through the official website of SAPRC or the Saudi Arabia Premium Residency Centre. This is an electronic platform, where you can apply for permanent residency in Saudi Arabia or a renewable residency of one year.
Benefits Of Premium Residency
The Saudi green card scheme allows a host of benefits to the premium residency permit holders, such as:
- Enter and leave the kingdom, whenever you wish to
- Reside in the kingdom with your family
- Use special lanes, like airport lanes meant for Saudi Arabians, at the entry and exit points
- Run and own a business, according to the Foreign Investment Law
- Apply for a visit visa for your relatives
- Own real estate anywhere, other than the border areas, Mecca and Medina. It can be for industrial, commercial or residential purposes
- Hire domestic help or housemaids from outside the kingdom
- Work in the private sector and change jobs, as and when required. However, jobs particularly meant for Saudi nationals are not included in this
- Under Saudi law, you can use real estate in Mecca and Medina, although you can’t own property there
- Own private transport and other movable objects, under the law of the kingdom
- Use banking facilities and access medical treatment at clinics and hospitals.
Earlier, all these privileges were strictly reserved only for Saudi nationals.
Documents Required For Premium Residency
To obtain a Saudi green card, you need to be at least 21 years of age. The following documents are mandatory for the premium residency status:
- A valid passport
- A valid Saudi Iqama or residency permit
- A clean and proven criminal record
- Medical reports showing that you are free of any infectious or contagious diseases
- If you are applying from within the kingdom, you will need to show that your current residency status is legal.
- Proof of your financial solvency through bank documents.
The Saudi Iqama costs around SAR 800,000, in case of permanent residency. For the one year renewable residency, the fee is SAR 100,000.
How To Apply For A Saudi Green Card
The green card application can be completed in three simple steps.
STEP 1: REGISTRATION AND ACCOUNT SET UP
Before beginning the application process, you will need to fill up the registration on in the official SAPRC website. The information required for this include your name, your father’s and grandfather’s name, passport expiry date, passport issue date and other personal details. Here, you will also need to provide details of your email address and phone number to create an account.
STEP 2: FILL THE ONLINE FORM
After your account is successfully created, you can proceed with filling up the online application form. Make sure you fill in all the details accurately to avoid any delays in processing or an outright rejection of your application. Here, you will need to enter your passport information, information regarding your children and spouse, education details, details about your parents, insurance details, travel dates, property and real estate information and other general data. You will also need to provide details such as the amount present in your savings account, in an investment account and so on. For this, you will be required to attach bank statements for the two years preceding your date of travel to Saudi Arabia.
STEP 3: RESIDENCY ISSUANCE
The approval decision will be declared within a month of submitting the application. Keep in mind that a permanent residency does not make the applicant eligible for Saudi citizenship.
When Does A Premium Residency Status Get Terminated?
As per Saudi law, the following cases can result in the termination of the Saudi green card status:
- If you fail to abide by the rules and regulations or other directives laid down by the kingdom
- In case you have provided incorrect information on the application form
- If a judgment or decision is passed against you, where you have asked to be expelled from the country
- If you have committed a crime, for which you have to be imprisoned for two months or pay a fine of SAR 100,000
- If you give up the green card on your own
- In case of your demise, the green card status is cancelled.
It is important to remember that the rights and benefits of the green card cannot be transferred to your family, in the event that you are no longer eligible for it.
There is no minimum period of time you are required to spend in Saudi Arabia once you are given the residency status. Also, there are no special taxes imposed on Saudi green card holders. However, if this is your first attempt at getting the premium residency status or you are simply looking for a hassle-free way to achieving the status, enlist the services of an experienced agency, like Rapid Visa. We will help and guide you through the entire process, so as to avoid any unnecessary delays or rejection of application.