Residence permit approval process
Residence permit approval process
Obtaining a residence visa for the first time involves the following steps:

  1. Complete the prescribed application form available from the Department of Immigration, along with the prescribed medical report for each foreign citizen applying for a residence permit.
  2. Compile the following supporting documents:
  3. – valid foreign investment approval certificate (copy)
    – police clearance (original) for each person applying for a residence permit over the age of 18
    – Passport identification pages (copy) and two passport photos for each person applying for a residence permit
    – Letter from local bank verifying deposit in trust covering the total amount of one -way return ticket s for those persons applying for residence permits (copy)
    – Statutory declaration for each person applying for a residence permit over the age of 18 listing all criminal offenses they have been convicted of during past 10 years

  4. Submit the completed application, medical report and supporting documents to the Immigration Department along with the required permit fee.
  5. If approved, receive the residency permit which can either be picked up from the Department of Immigration or received via the mail. If rejected, the applicant may appeal the decision to the Minister for Internal Affairs.

Complete processing time is 5 working days depending if all immigration requirements have been met.

Application to renew a residency permit is less onerous and must be made no less than 6 weeks prior to the permit’s expiry. The applicant must submit to the immigration , valid foreign investment approval certificate (copy), valid Business License (copy) and the required permit fee.

All residency permit applications are processed at the Department’s head office in Port Vila. Applicants, however, may obtain information and lodge applications at the Department’s outer island offices located in Luganville and Isangel.

Normally, the duration of the residence permit is linked to the duration of the foreign investment approval certificate. However, a foreign investor in good standing that has made a significant investment in the country may be issued with residence permit for a longer duration.