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Panama: Changes to the Requirements to Obtain the “Residence Permit as Friendly Nations” 

by Albalira Montufar

Published: May, 2021

Submission: May, 2021

 



The Ministry of Public Security modifies the requirements to request the residence permit for foreigners from specific countries who maintain friendly professional, economic and investment relationship with the Republic of Panama.


Panama, May 24, 2021. The Ministry of Public Security through Executive Decree No. 197 of May 7, 2021 (hereinafter the “Decree”), modifies the requirements to obtain the residence for foreigners from specific countries who maintain friendly professional, economic and investment relationship with the Republic of Panama, commonly known as “residence permit as friendly nations”, as follow:


  • Taiwan is eliminated from the list of countries whose citizens can apply for the residence permit as friendly nations.
  • The residence permit as friendly nations will be granted in 2 stages. In the first stage, a provisional residence permit will be granted for a period of 2 years. After the 2-year period, the applicant can request the permanent residence permit.
  • To apply for the residence permit as friendly nations, the applicant must provide the following requirements.

  1. The general requirements established by the Article 28 of the Decree Law No. 3 of February 22, 2008, which are (i) copy of the passport, (ii) non-criminal record from the country of origin or residence of applicant, (iii) good health certificate, (iv) payment of B/. 250.00 to the National Treasury, (v) payment of B/. 800.00 to the National Immigration Authority, and (vi) affidavit of personal background.
  2. Three (3) passport size photo.
  3. Documentation that demonstrates the purpose of requiring the residence permit according to the economic or professional activity of the applicant, which can be demonstrated with any of the following reasons.

  • For Working reasons. The applicant must provide:
  • A job letter from the employing company, which certify the job position, salary, and the commitment of the company to assume the repatriation expenses, depending on the case.
  • Public Registry Certification of the employing company.
  • Notice of Operations of the employing company.
  • To obtain the approval of the residence permit, the applicant must request a work permit through the Ministry of Labor and Labor Development.

  • For Investment in a real state. The applicant must provide:
  • Public Registry Certification of the real state which prove (i) the ownership of the real state by the applicant, and (ii) the real state’s minimum value of B/. 200,000.00.

  1. If the applicant will include dependents, the following documents must be provided.

  • Evidence of kinship through a marriage or birth certificate, depending on the case.
  • A responsibility letter from the applicant towards their dependents.
  • To apply for the permanent residence permit, the applicant must provide the same requirements mentioned above, except the checks of B/. 250.00 and B/.800.00

This Decree will take effect 90 days from its promulgation.


Comments


  • Previously, the residence permit as friendly nations granted a permanent residence in a single stage after the approval of the National Immigration Authority.
  • Before, the resident permit as friendly nations could be requested if the applicant was the owner of at least 50% of the shares of a Panamanian corporation.
  • Previously, the resident permit as friendly nations could be requested if the applicant was the owner of a real estate, with a value of more than B/. 100,000.00, now the value of the real state increase to B/. 200,000.00
  • With this Decree, the applicant do not need to prove his/her economic solvency. Before, the applicant had to provide a bank certification letter or account statement, reflecting a balance of no less than 4 average figures.
  • The new requirements to apply for the residence permit as friendly nations will be request as of August 20, 2021.

For more information, please contact us at [email protected].


 



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