What is the change? Kazakhstan no longer permits visa-free nationals to extend their stays past the permitted length of stay without leaving the country.

What does the change mean? Visa-free nationals intending to stay in Kazakhstan beyond the time period permitted for a visa-free stay must leave the country and enter again. The allowable duration of visa-free stays varies depending on nationality.

  • Implementation time frame: The change took effect Sept. 30.
  • Who is affected: Visa-free nationals intending to remain in Kazakhstan beyond the allowable duration of stay.
  • Impact on processing times: The change will add to the time it takes for visa-free nationals to remain in Kazakhstan in certain situations because they are no longer able to extend visa-free stays in-country.
  • Business impact: Foreign nationals conducting permitted business activities in Kazakhstan may have to leave the country and re-enter, depending on how long they wish to stay in Kazakhstan.

Background: Kazakhstan has visa-free travel arrangements with dozens of countries, including the United States, most European countries and most of the former Soviet republics. Prior to the recent change, visa-free nationals staying in Kazakhstan beyond the permitted length of stay could do so by requesting extensions in-country. Now, however, foreign nationals must leave and re-enter the country.

BAL Analysis: Though those affected by the change can leave Kazakhstan and re-enter on the same day and can do so without applying for a visa, the new rules nevertheless prolongs the process for remaining in Kazakhstan beyond the allowable duration of stay. Duration of stay provisions vary by nationality, and those with questions should contact their BAL attorney.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in Kazakhstan. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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