Uganda – Introduction of Electronic Immigration Application Procedures

Uganda – Introduction of Electronic Immigration

This GMS Flash Alert reports that Uganda has introduced an electronic application and processing system for visas, entry work permits, and passes.

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The Department of Citizenship & Immigration Control (DCIC) Uganda has introduced an electronic application and processing system for visas, entry work permits, and passes.1

Under the new application process, applicants for all immigration services such as visas, work permits, and passes are required to apply online.2  Following that online application, an electronic notification/authorization will be sent electronically to the applicant before proceeding to the preferred Entry Point or nearest Ugandan embassy/mission abroad for the visa to be issued or before entering the country to have the permit endorsed in the passport. 

WHY THIS MATTERS

Globally mobile employees coming to work in Uganda (and any trailing family members), their international assignment program managers, and their in-house or external immigration advisers need to be aware of the move to online applications for visas, passes, and work permits.  The DCIC is no longer receiving manual applications; this is also applicable to Ugandan embassies/missions abroad.  This should lead to swifter and more timely processing of applications.

It’s important to note that no airline/carrier will be allowed to carry passengers without Travel Authorization (e-visa approval).

Furthermore, organizations/companies that intend to send their staff to work in Uganda will have to undergo the process of profiling (more on this below) in order to obtain a code which will facilitate their application process.

Background and New System

The system started full operation on 1 July 2016.  Manual applications of visas on arrival were being processed alongside the electronic visas until 31 July 2016.  

Prior to introduction of the electronic system, applications for work permits and passes could be submitted while the applicant was in the country until approval and issuance.  The new procedure helps ensure that the applicant can only travel to Uganda if and when he or she has received Travel Authorization.  This effectively removes the option for travelers to obtain visas at the point of entry into the country.  

Organization Profiling

For applicants seeking work permits, the organizations/companies will now be required to submit specific company information to the DCIC for “profiling”3 in the system and a code that is unique to the organization/company will be generated.  Work permit applications for the specific organization/company can only be submitted electronically using the code.

Entry permit applications can only be made against “profiled” organizations/companies.

What You Can Apply for on E-immigration Portal

The following facilities can be applied for online:

  • All types of visas;
  • Entry permits/Work permits;
  • Students Pass;
  • Special Pass;
  • Dependent’s Pass (If the principal’s work permit was obtained electronically);
  • Certificate of Residence.

Timelines

The new procedure:

  • brings the application process ‘closer’ to applicants abroad;
  • helps ensure that only applicants with approved work permits may travel to Uganda;
  • provides the applicant an opportunity to personally submit an application and follow up on the progress from wherever he or she is. 

KPMG NOTE

The new procedure:

  • brings the application process ‘closer’ to applicants abroad;
  • helps ensure that only applicants with approved work permits may travel to Uganda;
  • provides the applicant an opportunity to personally submit an application and follow up on the progress from wherever he or she is. 

FOOTNOTES

1  For further information, see https://visas.immigration.go.ug/

and https://visas.immigration.go.ug/#/help/entry_permit.

2  Introduction of the e-immigration system does not affect the fees and legal requirements per category for obtaining a visa, pass, or work permit under the laws of Uganda.

3  It is our understanding that the process of “profiling” in this regard involves the entity providing documents relating to its registration, ownership, management, tax compliance status, financial status, and business license to the DCIC.  This information is submitted in electronic format.  Thereafter a Unicode code is assigned to the entity for use when applying for work permits.  It is not clear at this stage how this information is treated or evaluated.

CONTACTS

For additional information or assistance, please contact your local GMS or People Services professional* or one of the following professionals with the KPMG International member firm in Uganda:  

 

Benson Ndung’u

Tel. + 256 414 340315

bndungu@kpmg.com

 

David Kyeyago

Tel. + 256 414 340315

dkyeyago@kpmg.com

 

Rhoda Gati

Tel. + 256 414 340315

rgati@kpmg.com

 

* Please note that the KPMG International member firm in the United States does not provide immigration services.

The information contained in this newsletter was submitted by the KPMG International member firm in Uganda.

© 2016 KPMG, a Ugandan registered partnership and a member firm of the KPMG network of independent member firms affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative (“KPMG International”), a Swiss entity. All rights reserved.

Flash Alert is an Global Mobility Services publication of KPMG LLPs Washington National Tax practice. The KPMG logo and name are trademarks of KPMG International. KPMG International is a Swiss cooperative that serves as a coordinating entity for a network of independent member firms. KPMG International provides no audit or other client services. Such services are provided solely by member firms in their respective geographic areas. KPMG International and its member firms are legally distinct and separate entities. They are not and nothing contained herein shall be construed to place these entities in the relationship of parents, subsidiaries, agents, partners, or joint venturers. No member firm has any authority (actual, apparent, implied or otherwise) to obligate or bind KPMG International or any member firm in any manner whatsoever. The information contained in herein is of a general nature and is not intended to address the circumstances of any particular individual or entity. Although we endeavor to provide accurate and timely information, there can be no guarantee that such information is accurate as of the date it is received or that it will continue to be accurate in the future. No one should act on such information without appropriate professional advice after a thorough examination of the particular situation.

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