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Foreigners Can Now Apply Online for Visa D in Serbia for Employment


The Republic of Serbia has recently accelerated the process of digitalization and has been introducing new platforms each year that facilitate the work of administrative bodies, which all lead to a complete circle of digitization of the sector.

The digital platforms such as eGovernment , eInspector and ePay have been running successfully for a longer period, ePay, all aimed at speeding up and facilitating procedures that previously required citizens to spend much more time than it was necessary. These platforms facilitate the process both for the citizens and foreigners in Serbia, to access the governing bodies in the Republic of Serbia, as well as facilitate the arrival and work in the country.

To that end, the Law on Foreigners introduced a new type of visa in 2018, a long-stay visa on the basis of employment (visa D for employment). In our blog post on the facilitated process of employment and stay of foreigners in Serbia, we explained that the goal of Visa D is to enable work in Serbia for foreigners who intend to stay in Serbia on that basis for up to 180 days. On the other hand, if the work and stay is extended for a longer period, each foreigner must apply for a temporary stay and work permit for a longer period.

After Visa D was introduced, the Minister of Interior adopted a Rulebook on detailed conditions for applying for a temporary residence permit electronically on December 30, 2020, which we covered in our blog post on obtaining a residence permit in Serbia. Although the electronic application for temporary residence was supposed to start on April 1, 2021, the beginning of the application of this Rulebook was postponed, due to the lack of technical conditions. At the end of the year 2021, it began actively to be applied.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Office for IT and eGovernment, in May 2021, presented the new online service for the electronic application for a long-term visa for employment in Serbia (“Visa D”). This possibility was introduced for foreigners to apply online for a visa and simultaneously obtain both the Visa D and the work permit lasting up to 180 days for the Republic of Serbia.

This is enabled via the eConsulate portal, where a foreigner can apply for a Visa D for employment. The application is simple, just by registering and filling up the person’s account simply via entering their email and passcode. Through the registered personal account, the foreigner fills in the form with basic personal data, data on the travel document and the basis of the application, after which they will receive instructions for paying the administrative fee.

Immediately upon submitting the application, each visa application is assigned an identification number, which can then be used by an employer from Serbia to apply online with the National Employment Service for a work permit for up to 180 days. Therefore, except that the Law on Foreigners itself shortened the procedures for hiring foreign migrant workers by introducing a Visa D on the basis of employment, now, by introducing the eConsulate platform, the process of obtaining a work permit in Serbia is not only shorter but much easier. Specifically, the application process is much faster, and both requests are decided simultaneously within 30 days.

This is a logical course of improvement of the procedure of applying for Visa D on the basis of employment, similar to the introduced single application for temporary residence and work permit, which we covered previously, which also shortens the procedure of issuing permits to foreigners who wish to stay and work for more than 180 days in Serbia.

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Nemanja Žunić


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