Indonesia: Work Permit Applicants Must Await Visa Pre-Approval Before Entering

Work permit applicants who enter the country while their VITAS pre-approval is being processed risk delay or denial of their pre-approval application.

Foreign nationals applying for Indonesian work permits should not enter the country as business visitors or tourists until after the pre-approval process for their VITAS entry visa is completed. Those who enter while their pre-approval is being processed risk delay or denial.

Employers who attempt to file a VITAS pre-approval application (also known as a Telex-VITAS application) while the foreign national is in Indonesia may have their application denied, and the foreign national will be required to leave Indonesia before the application can be re-filed. Individuals who travel to Indonesia after the VITAS pre-approval application is filed on their behalf but before it is approved will still be allowed to enter the country. However, the immigration agency may place the VITAS pre-approval on hold until the sponsoring employer notifies the agency that the foreign national has left Indonesia.

The Directorate General of Immigration and airport checkpoint authorities have linked their electronic databases to enable them to verify whether a work permit applicant is in Indonesia during the prohibited period.

Previously, foreign nationals applying for work permits were free to enter Indonesia for business or social visits during the VITAS pre-approval process. However, once the VITAS pre-approval was obtained, these individuals were required to leave and reenter using a VITAS entry visa. Entry procedures have been tightened to curb perceived abuse of business visitor status, particularly by individuals with pending work permit applications.

Source: Fragomen

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