What is the change? Government offices will close in a number of Muslim countries the week of Sept. 20 for the Eid al-Adha holiday.

What does the change mean? Employers and foreign nationals who need government services should submit applications as soon as possible to avoid holiday-related delays.

  • Implementation time frame: Approximately Sept. 23-25. Government closures vary from country to country and range from one to eight days.
  • Visas/permits affected: All visas and permits.
  • Who is affected: Anyone needing to obtain visas, work permits, renewals or other immigration-related government services.
  • Impact on processing times: Delays should be expected due to office closures and possible backlogs when offices reopen.
  • Business Impact: Holiday delays may have a minor impact on business schedules and assignments.
  • Next steps: A number of countries are expected to announce the exact dates when offices will be closed within the next week.

Background: Eid al-Adha is­­ a Muslim holiday marking the end of the annual Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca. Also known as the Feast of the Sacrifice, it commemorates Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice his son to God. The holiday is also known as Eid-e-Ghorban, Kurban Bayramı or Hari Raya, among other names.

Closures vary from country to country and, in some cases, will be set when the new moon appears in the coming week. In most countries that celebrate the holiday, government offices will be closed for at least two days around Sept. 23-25. Saudi Arabia has announced that it will observe the holiday Sept. 20-27. 

BAL Analysis: Companies and foreign employees should check with their BAL attorney or local officials for office closures. Those in need of government services this month should submit applications as soon as possible in order to avoid delays.  

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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