Hiring a foreigner in Belarus: Registration of stay and employment

A foreign citizen, as defined by Belarusian law, is a person who is not a citizen of Belarus and has evidence of citizenship in another state.

Foreigners may stay in Belarus under one of 3 legal statuses:

The terms of employment of a foreigner directly depend on the status of his/her stay.

Permanent resident: foreign citizens can be employed under the same conditions as citizens of Belarus, except for some positions that can only be occupied by Belarusian nationals (police, military, government service etc.). There is no need for special work permits.

Temporarily staying: foreign citizens staying no more than 90 days in one calendar year may, in exceptional cases, be invited to Belarus for a period not more than 90 days to give a course of lectures, to carry out installation of equipment or provide training services for personnel operating this equipment, etc.(Law of the Republic of Belarus “On External Labor Migration”).

Temporary resident: foreign citizens are employed on the basis of a special permit. However, there are a number of exceptions, so we will consider employment under the special permission in more detail.

List of actions to register and employ a foreign citizen:

GETTING A VISA

Entry Visas:

  • visa type C (short-term visa) – for up to 90 days
  • visa type D (long-term visa) – for a period of up to 1 year with the right to stay up to 90 days in a calendar year, unless otherwise provided by international agreements.

Foreign employees do not need a visa if they are:

  • citizens of states with which Belarus has established a visa-free regime for entry in whole or in part (http://mfa.gov.by/visa/freemove/e75b142c77b4df66.html);
  • Employees / participants of HTP residents *
  • Persons involved in the implementation of investment projects, participants or residents of the Great Stone industrial park

Notice! The visa-free regime established for citizens of the EU for entry / exit through the Minsk national airport does not apply to foreigners arriving to Belarus for the purposes of employment.

REGISTRATION OF TEMPORARY STAY

When staying in Belarus for more than 5 days, excluding Sundays and official public holidays, foreign citizens should register at the department of internal affairs, division on citizenship and migration, at the place of their temporary stay, or via unified portal of e-services portal.gov.by.

  • A foreign citizen has the right to stay in Belarus for up to 90 days in a calendar year.
  • Citizens of Israel, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Ukraine and Montenegro are allowed to stay in Belarus for up to 90 days in a period of 180 days.

Notice! For failing to abide by these rules for an invited foreigner, the company may be subject to an administrative penalty of approximately USD 125.

REPORTING A JOB VACANCY

Information about open vacancies should be sent to a committee on labor, employment, and social security. The application should indicate the correct vacant position, the position code, salary, working schedule, and additional requirements to the job.

Notice! Foreigners can be hired only if vacant position cannot be occupied by a Belarusian resident.

GETTING SPECIAL PERMISSIONS

Before applying for a special permit, information about the vacancy must be published at the Republican Vacancy Bank 15 working days in advance.
An organisation hiring more than 10 foreigners must also receive a permission to attract foreign labour.

Notice!

Special permission is not necessary for foreigners who are:

  • citizens of EAEU member countries (Russia, Kazakhstan, Armenia and Kyrgyzstan)
  • heads of representative offices of foreign organizations
  • winners of national (international) competitions in their professional field
  • hired as a resident of the High-Tech Park
  • covered by other cases according to the Law of the Republic of Belarus On External Labor Migration

Permission to attract foreign labor is not necessary for foreigners who are:

  • highly qualified employees
  • heads of companies where they participate as the owner of the property, founder, or participant
  • winners of national (international) competitions in their professional field
  • citizens of EAEU member countries (Russia, Kazakhstan, Armenia, and Kyrgyzstan)

EMPLOYMENT AND REGISTRATION OF THE LABOUR AGREEMENT

After obtaining special permission, the employment procedure is similar to hiring a citizen of Belarus. Signing a labour agreement and order of hiring, etc.

Notice! Within a month, a labour agreement with a foreign citizen must be registered in the department of citizenship and migration which issued the special permit. Any changes to the labour agreement must also be registered in the same way.

The following obligatory conditions must be included in the labour agreement with a foreigner, according to by the Law on External Migration:

  • the procedure, grounds for termination, amendment, and extension of the labour agreement
  • moving to the Republic of Belarus, nutrition, accommodation, medical care, and other additional conditions.

GETTING A TEMPORARY RESIDENCE PERMIT

The conclusion of a labour agreement entitles a foreigner to a temporary residence permit for the duration of the special permit.
An application for a temporary residence permit may be submitted:

  • by a foreigner personally
  • by a foreigner’s employer

The following documents must be attached to the application:

  • copy of labour agreement
  • copy of special permission
  • identification
  • medical insurance policy
  • accommodation rental contract or certificate of ownership
  • payment confirmation

Following all of the above steps will allow hiring a foreigner as soon as possible in accordance with the law.
Non-compliance with the procedures of hiring foreigners is subject to a penalty under article 23.55 of the Code of Administrative Offences of the Republic of Belarus.

* The article is for informational purposes only. For a complete familiarisation with the law, refer to the source. The material was prepared by reference to the Law on External Migration, the Law on Foreign Citizens, Decree No. 7, Labor Code of the Republic of Belarus, Resolution of the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Belarus N 156, On the Procedure for Issuing Permits, Code of Administrative Offenses of the Republic of Belarus, etc.

Our expert

Alena Agafonova
HR-documentation specialist, Minsk
+375 / 17 / 290 25 57

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