Afghanistan Compliance Advisory – Issue #24

3 January 2018

The Ministry of Commerce and Industries (MOCI), led by His Excellency Minister Humayoon Rasaw, has been successfully implementing a long list of reforms in many areas, but particularly relevant are policies to facilitate investment. We take this opportunity to highlight some of these below.

 

One Stop Shop

Unless an investor is opening a company in general sectors such as logistics, construction or trading, all other sectors require obtaining permission from one of the line Ministries – each of which have their own process. This includes sectors of healthcare, education, communications, transportation and more. The President has now signed a decree moving licensing representatives from all line Ministries to MOCI, creating a one stop shop for investors. Read the full decree here.

 

Streamlining Authentications

Foreign businesses interested in registering in Afghanistan are required to provide an authenticated Board Resolution, Power of Attorney and Articles of Association. However, the authentication process can take several months to complete because it currently requires processing by the relevant Notary, State, Federal Government, Afghan Embassy abroad, Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) Consular Section in Kabul and MOFA Economic Section before finally the MOCI could utilize. The President has issued a decree allowing MOCI to accept documents authenticated by official departments of the foreign country, without having to have the Afghan Embassy, MOFA Consular Section and MOFA Economic Section further process. Read the full decree here.

 

Visas on Arrival (Investors)

The President has issued a decree amending Article 27 of the visa law allowing for foreign investors to be issued Afghan business visas on arrival at Hamid Karzai International Airport. AHG can assist with preparing the required documents:

 

  • A notarized copy of a valid business license with at least 6-month validity
  • A recent notarized bank statement with a minimum of $100,000 on deposit
  • Completed visa application form with a recent photo
  • A valid commercial document that lists the address of the company
  • Government visa fees
  • Original company request letter
  • A Police Clearance Letter or No-Objection Certificate

 

 

New Visas (Military Contractors)

The process for obtaining new BSA visas has been further streamlined. These are for military contractors only, those operating under a prime or subcontract to the U.S. DOD or NATO. AHG can assist with processing visa invitation applications through the MOCI and then MOFA in Kabul. The required documents are:

 

  • One request letter per batch on contractor letterhead listing your employee names, passport numbers, nationalities and your authorized agent
  • Color copy of valid business license (3-year license required)
  • Color copy of the biographical page of the passport
  • Copy of Letter of Authorization (LOA) for each applicant – either from DOD SPOT or NATO NSPA/NCI
  • One company-wide NATO Contractor Certificate from Resolute Support HQ
  • $90 government fees paid to MOCI

 

 

Once MOFA issues the visa invitation letter to the chosen Consulate, such as the Afghan Consulate in Dubai, AHG can pickup the original passport in Dubai, get the Afghan visa stamped in and return back, usually within the same business day. The required documents are:

 

  • Company request letter includes a list of the names, nationalities and passport numbers of all employees applying for visas and the authorized pickup/drop-off agent
  • One visa application form per applicant
  • Two 4x5cm photos attached to the application form
  • Original passport valid for at least six (6) months
  • $1,020 government fees paid to Consulate (varies by country)

 

 

Visa Renewals (Military Contractors). 

These are issued in Kabul are for employees with existing 1 year BSA visas. AHG can assist with processing the required documents, which are usually the above documents, plus:

 

  • Company request letter includes a list of the names, nationalities and passport numbers of all employees applying for visas and the authorized pickup/drop-off agent
  • Color copy of the previous 1 year BSA visa (30 days or less left on current visa)
  • Color copy of the most recent entry stamp on passport by Afghan immigration officials
  • Color copy of company photo ID of the applicant (non-military ID acceptable)
  • $800 government fees paid to the Ministry of Interior

 

 

Visas and Renewals (All Others)

An entry visa invitation letter is required first, then a 1-month entry visa, then once the employee is in country a 1-year work permit is obtained, followed by a 6-month work visa, which is renewable for another 6 months. AHG can assist with processing the required documents which are similar to the above, except that instead of a NATO Contractor Certificate, employee LOA and company photo ID, these documents and government fees are required:

 

  • Applicant’s educational certificate (i.e., university diploma or professional qualification)
  • Applicant’s CV or resume
  • Applicant’s employee contract
  • $30 government fee for a new visa invitation letter from MOCI
  • $150 government fee for a work permit fee with 1-year validity
  • $300 government fee for a work visa fee with 6-month multiple entry status
  • $300 government fee for visa renewal for another 6 months

 

 
For those new to Afghan compliance, previous issues of this advisory and relevant documents are available at https://ahg.af/aca/.

 
To subscribe to this advisory, please click here. For more information, quotations or questions about any of the above, please email info@ahg.af.

 

 

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