Visa renewal for employees contracted with US Army

A new circular from the Public Authority for Manpower (PAM) allows companies that have ongoing contracts with the US Army in Kuwait to renew the residency permits of their employees for one year, subject to their signing of an undertaking and agreement to accept certain conditions.

Clauses in the agreement stipulate that contractors need to follow regulations governing contracts on providing logistic services to the US Army, as well as a commitment that when changing workers registered in the contract their residency duration will not exceed one year.

The agreement also stipulates that the authorized signatory of the companies should transfer non-Kuwaiti and Americans to the files of their respective companies, and it is not allowed to add new workers on the contract upon which an agreement has been signed. In case of violation of any of the conditions contained in the decisions and circulars in reference, all necessary legal procedures would be taken by the authority.

Meanwhile, officials of some logistic service companies complained that the delayed decision by PAM had caused them to incur additional expenses on account of fines and penalties imposed on them involving some workers who had left the country.

The officials explained that while the renewal agreement will resolve some of the immediate problems associated with employee residences, it did not go far enough. Clauses in the agreement still restrict employers from adding new workers to a signed contract. The employers pointed out that the need for additional workers came about as a result of the US Army and Ministry of Defense in Kuwait expanding the initial contract and increasing the workload while maintaining the same time frame for completion of the project.