UNDERSTANDING WORK PERMITS-By Edward Maroncha

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Introduction

A work permit is a document issued to foreign workers to enable them to engage in meaningful employment or business in the host country. Whenever a foreigner comes to Kenya to work, they are required to acquire a work permit from the department of Immigration. The work permit is issued by the Director of immigration Services upon recommendation by the Permit Determination Committee.

Types of Work Permits

There are seven classes of work permits depending on the nature of work the foreigner wishes to engage in. These are:

  1. Class A Permit: this permit is issued to people who wish to engage in mining or prospecting for minerals.
  1. Class B Permit: this is issued to foreigners who are in the agriculture and animal husbandry sector.
  1. Class C Permit: this is given to stipulated professionals who wish to practice in the country. Not every professional can get the permit though. The law recognizes only the following professionals: Medical professionals, Dentists, Legal professionals, Surveyors, Estate Agents, Valuers and Land Agents, Architects or Quantity surveyors, Pharmacists, Veterinary Surgeons, Engineers, Nursing Professionals, Physiotherapists, Accountants, Chartered Secretaries, Actuaries, Scientists and ICT Experts.
  1. Class D Permit: This permit is issued to employees. However, for one to qualify, they must have been offered specific employment by a specific employer, the government of Kenya an organ of the United Nations or any other agency approved by the Department of Immigration. To acquire this permit, the foreigner must show that he/she is possession of skills or qualifications that are not available in Kenya.
  1. Class F Permit: This permit is given to people who wish to engage in manufacturing. They must have obtained the licenses and other required approvals for the specific manufacturing they intend to engage in.
  1. Class G Permit: This is usually given to businesspeople, professionals and consultants who do not qualify for the other permits.
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