Moving to Bahrain can bring many benefits to foreign citizens no matter their reasons, as this is one of the most prolific economies in the Middle East. The easy access to Europe and Africa, make Bahrain an important hub for those doing business in this region, however, it is also easy to travel here and from here when it comes to work visits.
Since we mentioned Africa, citizens of South Africa will find it quite easy to relocate temporarily or permanently to Bahrain if they meet the immigration requirements imposed by the authorities here.
Below, our lawyers explain how to immigrate to Bahrain from South Africa. You can rely on us for assistance in preparing and filing the immigration papers.
Short-term visits from South Africa to Bahrain
Following the example of countries around the world, Bahrain has enabled the Electronic Visa System (e-visa) which enables foreign citizens to obtain the travel visas in a very simple way. South African citizens can file for this type of visa if their stay in Bahrain will be shorter than 30 days. The visa will be issued online and can be used multiple times, as long as it does not exceed the 30-day duration.
This type of visa is suitable for South African citizens interested in setting up companies in Bahrain and for which short visits are necessary.
However, when trying to avoid too many visits, our company formation agents in Bahrain can be their liaison with the local authorities. Opening a bank account for corporate use is of utmost importance for incorporating a company in Bahrain. The capital is then deposited into the company’s bank account after it has been opened in the preferred Bahraini bank. In exchange, the bank will issue a certificate for a capital deposit.
We can also help you apply for Bahraini residency through investment. Applicants must be retirees with a minimum set monthly income of BHD 4,000 or highly qualified people who meet specific standards. They must also own a property worth at least BHD 200,000 ($530,000). Contact us for information on the program.
How to obtain residency in Bahrain as a South African citizen
Many South African citizen find employment in Bahrain case which requires longer stays when the work contract exceeds 3 months of stay. However, this is not the only way in which a South African can immigrate to Bahrain. The others two imply:
- – investment,
- – self-sponsorship for business purposes.
Sponsorship is a mandatory requirement when moving to Bahrain from South Africa, which is why in the case of investment or business, self-sponsorship is accepted. In the case of employment, the Bahrain company will act as a sponsor of the work visa holder.
Similar requirements apply to citizens of other countries, including of the United States.
You can also rely on our lawyers in Bahrain for support in employment-related matters. We can help hire workers from Bahrain or outside the country. In the latter case, you must know that work and residence visas are up to you to obtain on their behalf. We can also help with the creation of labor contracts.
How to relocate to Bahrain from South Africa through investment
One of the main reasons Bahrain has a thriving economy is its openness to foreign investments and in order to encourage businessmen from all over the world, it has enabled an immigration by investment program.
The scheme implies the purchase of real estate property with a minimum value of 50,000 BHD (approximately 130,000 USD). A guarantee of 15,000 BHD (around 40,000 USD) under the form of a bank deposit will also be necessary.
Through this scheme, South African citizens will be granted 10-year residence permits.
If you want to immigrate to Bahrain from South Africa under this program, our local specialists are at your service with information and assistance in preparing the necessary documents. The family visa allows dependents and family members of foreign workers to petition for a residence visa. They are permitted to remain in Bahrain for the duration of the assignment, but they are not permitted to engage in paid employment. If you need support in Bahraini immigration, please contact us.
We are also at your service with accounting services in Bahrain after relocation.
What are the documents required for immigration to Bahrain from South Africa?
The following documents must be submitted with the Bahrain immigration authorities when moving here from South Africa:
- copies after the valid passport and ID,
- the application form that can be found online or can be procured by our specialists,
- a certificate of good conduct or clean criminal record,
- a copy of a rental agreement (the property in Bahrain must be rented prior to arriving)
Other documents can be required based on the reason of immigration.
In the case of South African businesspersons setting up companies in Bahrain, the Articles of Association of the company must be drafted. In this case, things can be very simple if you use our company registration services in Bahrain.
We can also help foreign citizens of other countries such as UK who want to relocate to Bahrain. Our Bahraini lawyers provide advice on a variety of employment-related issues to both multinational businesses and employees, such as the drafting and review of individual and collective employment contracts, employee transfers, health and safety requirements, among many others.
Why choose to move to Bahrain?
Bahrain is one of the most prolific economies in the Middle East. A member of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), it relies on the extraction of oil in order to support its economy. Those who work in this sector benefit from stable and high incomes, which is why the country’s workforce is made of a large proportion of expats.
With respect to the relations with South Africa, the two countries started their relations in 1993 when a South African Embassy was opened in Manama.
According to statistics:
- – Bahrain’s population was made of 1.6 million people at the respective time,
- – currently, its population is made in a proportion of 52% of expats,
- – Bahrain is also home to more than 200 financial institutions.
If you want to move to Bahrain from South Africa and need assistance, do not hesitate to contact our lawyers.