Qatar Considers Plan to Grant Expats with Permanent Residency

Following the Saudi-led boycott, Qatar has planned to allow permanent residency to some expatriates who are a dominant part of the country’s population. This is the first of its kind move by any of the Gulf States.

“According to the provisions of the bill, the Ministry of Interior may grant a permanent residency ID to a non-Qatari if they meet the conditions specified in the law,” –  Qatari government statement

Permanent Residency Conditions and Benefits

A draft law has been approved by Qatar to provide permanent residency to some of its foreigners. The Interior Ministry of Qatar will allow permanent residency status to emigrants if they are married to a Qatari, children of Qatari women, have “performed great services to the state” or have “special competencies”.

The cardholders will be given the same rights as Qatari nationals and will be able to receive the state’s generous welfare system benefits, including education and health care services.

The Qatar News Agency reported that priority will be given for military and civilian public jobs after locals, and that the cardholders would be able to own property and run certain commercial activities without a local partner as part of their benefits.

“The new law provides an opportunity to put Qatar in the headlines as a more open, forward-thinking state when compared to its neighbors, which do not have similar residency programs,” says Allison Wood, a Middle East and North Africa analyst.

“It’s one of the means to embarrass the rest of the Gulf states, that Qatar is taking the situation of human rights into account. Qatar wants to shift public opinion because of this crisis,” says Al-Manna, a Kuwaiti political analyst.

Many Arab Gulf states boast one of the highest numbers of expatriate workers. However, no other Gulf states have allowed such naturalization of foreigners with the exception of rare cases and under strict conditions.

The legislation was passed after four Arab countries including Saudi Arabia imposed sanctions on Qatar, accusing it of terrorism which Qatar has repeatedly denied.

Via Bloomberg


  • Mr. Abdul Wahab, need your precious comment here to destroy this article as you always do.

    • Where is he when you need him?

      • Muhammed Ovais Alam

        Busy replying on other articles.

        • May be this article is beyond his smartness. :))

          • Muhammed Ovais Alam

            Do not challenge him

  • M Waseem Akhtar

    Smart move by Qatar to get support of foreign workers and WEST which will ultimately make Qatar a better choice among Arab countries.

  • Ali Salman

    Some Pakistanis who even drove trucks in 1971’s small conflict between Qatar-Bahrain got Qatari citizenship back in early 2000. Talent criteria is tough, you have to be Picasso to get it, only with 35+ year old woman can marry an expat.

  • Ali

    “This is the first of its kind move by any of the Gulf States.”

    Bahrain is already giving permanent residency under similar plan