In April 2016 a number of amendments were introduced to the migration legislation. In particular, the rules for entry and stay of foreigners in the Republic of Kazakhstan, as well as their departure from the country, were changed (by Kazakhstan Government Decree No. 148 dated 21 January 2012) (hereinafter the Rules). Below we describe the most important of those changes.
- The moment of the start of the calculation of the five-day period for registering foreigners has been clarified: Foreigners temporarily staying in the Republic of Kazakhstan (for more than five days), shall, within five calendar days after crossing the state border, register with the bodies of internal affairs. Previously, the Rules did not contain the exact procedure for calculating the above-mentioned period. According to the amendments, the calculation period starts from 00:01 of the day during which the foreign national has crossed the state border.
- The possibility of extending the 90 day period of stay for another 90 days for citizens of the countries of the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU), namely the citizens of the Russian Federation (RF), the Republic of Belarus and Armenia (with the exception of citizens of the Kyrgyz Republic) has been cancelled: As a result of the changes, the 90 day period of stay of citizens will not be renewed for the same term, as it was earlier. In particular, at the end of this period, citizens of Russia, Belarus and Armenia are obliged to leave the territory of the Republic of Kazakhstan and to enter it again, if necessary.
- Between the Governments of Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan there is a separate agreement on the procedure of stay of citizens dated 11 May 2012, whereby citizens of the Kyrgyz Republic have the right to extend the 90 day registration for the same period without departing the Republic of Kazakhstan.
- Citizens of the EEU countries coming to the Republic of Kazakhstan for the purpose of employment can apply for registration for one year with the possibility of annual renewal without having to leave the Republic of Kazakhstan.
- The procedure for entry into the Republic of Kazakhstan for foreigners who arrive with children has been simplified: since 2016, foreign citizens who have not reached the age of 16 are exempt from registration.