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Immigration & Work Permits

Work Permits

Although Cambodia is known for its leniency in practice with foreign workers possessing appropriate documentation for employment, by law they are required to have the proper visas and work permits in Cambodia, as established by immigration laws. Work permits must be secured for employees, and sponsored by a locally licensed and incorporated entity, which can be a problem for companies just entering the Cambodian market. If you have yet to complete the incorporation process you can use an outsourced management company or GEO Employer of Record to sponsor the employee for the necessary permits.

Your Options

Have your own company

The process of applying for a work permit is quite straightforward. Company management must request a work permit and must be registered with the Labor Ministry. It is possible for companies that have established a Rep (Representative) Office or WFOE (Wholly Foreign Owned Enterprise) in Cambodia to arrange work permits. Long term business visas are known as E Visas are issued for 3, 6, or 12 month durations, however, recent crackdowns by the Government have rendered these insufficient and foreigners are now required to hold valid work permits.

There are two types of work permits available:

Temporary work permits

These are issued to staff and management specialists, technical staff, skilled workers, and service providers or other labourers.

Permanent work permits

These are issued to foreign immigrants duly recognised by the Minister Interior, and foreign investors, spouses, and other dependents who are recognised by the Council for the Development of Cambodia.

The most significant issue in applying for a work permit is that fees are not specified publicly by the Ministry of Interior. The steps can be considered as company level, and employee level information.

Apply for a Business Visa

This can be applied for in advance at the employee’s nearest Cambodian Embassy, and are also available upon arrival at Phnom Penh airport. The E Visa costs US $25.

Obtain approval from the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training

The employer must first contact the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training to obtain approval to employ a foreign worker. Unfortunately, public information is scarce as to the estimated time and cost of this step. In general, however, the information can be obtained from the local municipality or province police station, who are able to assist.

Provide all company level information

These documents are:

  • The Certificate of Incorporation with company stamp
  • Registered business address
  • Tax patent with company stamp
  • List of expatriate and local employees (ratio must not be below 9:1)
  • MOC approval
  • Articles of Incorporation of the company

Provide all employee level information

These include:

  • Name, gender, date of birth and height
  • Copy of an ID card and/or passport
  • Copy of E Visas
  • Current residential address
  • Full names of mother and father
  • Education
  • Photo of employee
  • Health certificate
  • Starting date at company, function of the role, weekly hours worked, salary, and form of payment of salary (i.e. cash or EFT)
  • Year in which expatriate received their first E Visa

Time: Around 1 month in total

Cost: US$100 annually

Use the Shield GEO Employer of Record Solution

Once you get in touch with us, one of our consultants will take all the work off your hand, co-ordinate with our local partners to get all the required permits organised, provide the processing time, costs, document-checklist and keep you informed through the process. Contact us to know more.

Types of visas in Cambodia

Category Description of Visa
Business Visa (E Visa) E Visas may be obtained at at the employee’s nearest Cambodian Embassy, and are also available upon arrival at Phnom Penh airport. It costs USD 25.
Work Permit Work permits are valid for a year, and can be renewed so long as they are not renewed beyond the period specified by the residence permit. They cost USD 100 and take approximately 1 month to process.
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