Work Permit in Bangladesh

Work Permit in Bangladesh

Work permit is mandatory for every foreign national seeking employment in Bangladesh. Three government authorities issue work permit in Bangladesh.

Here, we are going to tell you how to collect work permit from BIDA & BEPZA. 

Work permit issued by BIDA

Private sector industrial enterprises, branch office, liaison/representative office desiring to employ foreign nationals are required to apply to BIDA in their prescribed from. While issuing work permit, BIDA usually follows the following guidelines:

  1. Only nationals of countries recognized by Bangladesh are considered for employment.
  2. Employment of expatriate personnel is considered only in industrial/commercial establishments which are sanctioned/registered by the appropriate authority.
  3. Employment of foreign nationals is normally considered for the job for which local experts/technicians are not available.
  4. Persons below 18 years of age are not eligible for employment.
  5. A decision of the board of directors of the concerned company for new employment/employment extension is to be furnished in each case.
  6. The number of foreign employees should not exceed 5% in the industrial sector and 20% in commercial sector of the total employees, including top management personnel.
  7. Initially, employment of any foreign national is considered for a term of one year, which may be extended on the basis of merit of the case.
  8. Security clearance will be required from Ministry of Home Affairs.

Process of obtaining work permit by BIDA

First step: publication of a newspaper advertisement.

The employer is required to publish a newspaper advertisement or online advertisement for the recruitment. This requirement is not always mandatory.

Second step: application for issuance of E/E1/PI visa recommendation.

Local sponsor (Liaison/Branch Office or local company) will apply to BIDA through online for issuance of E/E1/PI visa recommendation in favor of the desired foreign national. 

Currently, both BIDA & BEPZA are issuing three types of Visa: E, E1 & PI. Please see the following chart to see the VISA type for which you are applicable. 

Type of visaWho are eligibleArrival / travel purpose
EExperts/consultant/employee/person employed
in government/semi government/ autonomous/ project or farm of contractor of home and abroad.
Professional Responsibility
E1Foreigners engaged in Machinery and software
supplies / Installation / maintenance / supervision /
project Inspection and such things
Machinery and software providing / Setting / Maintenance / training / Supervision / project inspection Etc.
PIForeign capital investorConducting Investment / business /
Commercial organization

(ref: BD Immigration & Passport office

The following documents are usually required for this VISA application:

  1. Copy of permission letter for branch/liaison/representative office or Memorandum of articles of association and certificate of incorporation in case of locally incorporated company.
  2. Board Resolution for employment of foreign nation(s) mentioning Expatriate Name, Nationality & Passport Number.
  3. Photograph of the Expatriate.
  4. Copy of passport of the Expatriate/Investor/Employee (Whole of the used part).
  5. Appointment Letter/transfer order/service contract or agreement for expatriate/investors.
  6. Certificate of all academic qualification & professional experience for the employees.
  7. Paper clipping showing advertisement made for recruitment of local personal prior to appointment of the expatriate(s).
  8. Specific activities of the company.
  9. Statement of manpower showing list of local and expatriate personal employed with designation, salary break-up, nationality and date of first appointment. (Latest Copy).
  10. Encashment certificate of inward remittance of minimum US $50,000.00 as initial establishment cost for branch/liaison/representative office and locally incorporated/ joint venture and 100% foreign ownership companies.
  11. Up-to-date Income tax clearance certificate (Organization).
  12. Attachment of company’s comments as per remarks (if any)

NB: All documents shall have to be attested by the Chairman/ CEO / Managing director/ Country Manager/ Chief executive of the Company/ firms.

Document’s must be submitted by an authorized person of the organization including the letter of authorization.

Application can be submitted on online ( For this purpose, authorize person must have to open an account on BIDA. 

Third step: application for a visa in the respective Bangladesh embassy or high commission

Once BIDA issue the visa recommendation, the foreign national should apply for the visa in the respective Bangladesh Embassy or High Commission. Once the E visa is issued, the foreign national should enter Bangladesh with the E visa.

Forth step: application for a work permit in Bangladesh.

Within 15 days from the date of arrival of the foreign national, application for work permit should be submitted to BIDA. The following papers/documents are required for new work permit:

  1. All documents stated in second step.
  2. Attested photocopy of passport with arrival stamp ‘E’, ‘E1’ or ‘PI’ type visa for employee.

All the Documents mentioned above can be submitted by the authorized person through online One stop service of BIDA. In that case, maximum PDF file size should be not more than 2 MB. 

Tk. 5,000 for new wok permit fees shall be submitted by online payment gateway -Credit Card (VISA, Master Card), Mobile Banking (Bkash), Computer payment for Sonali Bank after approved the application. 

Please keep in mind, work permit shall be extended always after each year. Renewal fee is Tk. 5,000 for extension of every year. 

Fifth step: security clearance.

Once work permit is issued by BIDA, a copy of the work permit would then sent letter to Ministry of Home Affairs for security clearance by BIDA. After some scrutiny, security clearance will be issued.

Work permit issued by BEPZA

Foreign national intends to work in Export Processing Zone (EPZ) require prior work permit from Bangladesh Export Processing Zones Authority (BEPZA). BEPZA issued this work permit upon the application from the employer who has a factory in the EPZ.

Process of obtaining a work permit from BEPZA

First, the employer is required to obtain a visa recommendation letter for the expatriate from BEPZA. The following documents are required to submit:

  1. Appointment letter/contract for the employment;
  2. Paper cutting of the advertisement in local newspaper for the post; and
  3. Photocopy of the expatriate’s passport.

Once the expatriate arrived in Bangladesh, the employer is required to apply for work permit in the zonal offices of respective EPZ using the prescribed form (available at the zonal office of all EZP) with supporting documents. Applicable fees should also be paid. Supporting documents are:

  1. The above mentioned three documents;
  2. Prescribed form;
  3. Passport size and stamp size photograph;
  4. Academic and experiment certificate (not mandatory); and
  5. Visa recommendation letter. * 
  6. money receipt of deposited fee for Work Permit

*for getting VISA recommendation letter following documents should be submitted to the concerned zone of BEPZA:

1. Application of the enterprise through zone office along with appointment letter

2. Relevant pages of Passport, 

3. Education and experience certificate as per paper advertisement and copy of the paper advertisement

The zonal office will verify the documents and send the same to Head Office of BEPZA for final approval.

Head office will issue the work permit and send the same to the respective zonal office.

Usually it takes 30-45 days to issue a work permit by BEPZA.

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