If you chose Indonesia as a country to ply your trade, there are two types of employment visas available for foreign workers planning to live and work in Indonesia.

ITAS (Izin Tinggal Terbatas), is a temporary residency permit. This is the most common permit held by expats living in Indonesia. It allows holders to live in the country for up to two years and can be renewed three times, giving them six years of legal residency; and.

KITAP (Kartu Izin Tinggal Tetap),  a permanent stay permit that is available for application to only those foreign workers who have held ITAS for a minimum of three consecutive years.

In Indonesia, applying for an ITAS will be done by employers on behalf of their foreign workers. A work permit issued for a foreigner is intended to grant working privileges to his or her family as well.

A dependent must be sponsored and must have their individual work permit in order to work in Indonesia. It also depends upon the market for the skills he or she has.

Steps to Obtain an Indonesia Work Permit

#1 – Obtain approval from the government and submit the Rencana Penempatan Tenaga Kerja Asing (RPTKA) to the Ministry of Manpower 

Employers wishing to employ a foreign national must first get a formal government approval to do so before applying for a VITAS permit visa. Requesting approval must take the form of an announcement letter (SPT), or letter from the Indonesia Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM) indicating that an employment contract has been signed.

That being done, an Expatriate Placement Plan, or a RPTKA must also be submitted to the Ministry of Manpower. When approved, this RPTKA will be used as the basis for issuing a limited stay permit (ITAS) to the foreign employee in question.

Documents Required obtaining an RPTKA

  • RPTKA application form
  • A letter detailing the reasons for hiring a foreign national, and his/her role in the company;
  • A copy of all sponsorship’s company documents. Please note that to hire foreign worker, the company’s paid up capital must be at least IDR 1,100,000,000 per one foreign worker
  • Recommendation letter from another institution for certain type of company such as Oil and Gas; mining and transportation. This is not needed for a trading or consulting company
  • Copy of the Manpower Report (WajibLaporKetenagakerjaan – WLK), an annual report to the labour department stating the number of expats and local workers employed in the company (issued online by Ministry of Manpower)
  • Company organization structure chart
  • One Indonesian counterpart employee per expat (not required for directors and commissioners or non-resident directors/commissioners)

However, companies employing foreign workers in the following roles do not need to apply for a RPTKA,

  • Shareholders of the company’s board of directors or board of commissioners,
  • Diplomatic and consular officers,
  • Certain types of government work.

Employers should also note that foreign workers cannot be hired to work in the HR department of any company operating in Indonesia and/or in certain other jobs specified by the government.

If any organisations need to urgently hire foreign workers, they can do so by applying for a RPTKA from the Minister or an appointed official at the Ministry of Manpower after their foreign employee has started work – as long as it is no later than two working days after they begin.

#2 – Apply for a work permit (IMTA)

Once the RPTKA has been approved, employers must apply for an IMTA. To do so, they must also submit personal information about the applicant to the Ministry of Manpower. These information will be processed and approved in no longer than two working days

This information includes their gender, nationality, place and date of birth, passport number and length of time it is valid for, their job role and how long they have worked for the company, along with certificates of education and work experience.

IMTAs are issued for a maximum period of one year. But they may be extended in line with how long the RPTKA is valid for, up to a maximum period of two years.

The documents required to obtain an IMTA comprise a: 

  • The RPTKA approval form
  • Passport copy
  • Proof of an education certificate relevant to the position
  • A certificate of competence or work experience of at least five years in a position relevant to the position
  • An insurance policy issued by an insurance company incorporated in Indonesia
  • A statement from the expat agreeing to transfer his/her knowledge to Indonesian counterpart
  • Receipt of the DKP-TKA payment (US$ 100 per month or of US$1,200 per year)
  • Two coloured photographs with red background (edited photo is unacceptable)
  • Possess a Taxpayer Identity Number (TIN/NPWP) and have already registered in the National Social Security System (BPJS) if you have worked in Indonesia more than 6 months

# 3 – Apply for a Limited Stay Visa and Permit 

The Indonesia Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM) will need to issue a letter of recommendation to the Department of Immigration, notifying it that it has issued VITAS to the recommended foreign employee.

Under the new regulations, applicants may concurrently apply for an ITAS at any nearby Indonesian embassy.

The relevant Indonesian diplomatic mission will issue the VITAS and a letter approving the issuance of the ITAS within two working days of receiving a completed application form.

Furthermore, foreign workers will be granted a multiple re-entry permit, which will be valid for the same length of time as their ITAS.

An ITAS allows expatriates in Indonesia to legally take up employment, earn his remuneration and open a bank account. It also gives one the right to stay without having to leave the country on a regular basis and enables them to obtain permanent residency status after three years.

The overall cost to the employer of obtaining an ITAS is roughly between US$1000 and US$1,200.

Documents required by employer to obtain an ITAS. 

From the Employer: 

  • A copy of RPTKA;
  • A copy of the PIC’s ID (KTP) of the sponsor
  • A copy of the ID (KTP) of a local employee working for the same company;
  • All of sponsorship’s company documents
  • Manpower Report (WLK)
  • Blank letterhead of the company
  • Company stamp

From the Applicant:

  • Copy of the passport with validity of at least 18 months;
  • Copy of curriculum vitae stamped by the company and signed by the director on a stamp
  • Copy of university certificate or highest education degree in English or Bahasa, stamped by the company and signed by the director on a stamp
  • Work certificate with minimum 5 years of experience
  • Health insurance
  • Photographs

# 4 –  Apply for a KITAS Card and Blue Foreigner’s Registration Book 

After the ITAS has been obtained, foreign workers can apply for a KITAS Card and Blue Foreigners Registration Book, which is used to record their immigration status.

Both of these will grant permit for a foreigner for a stay up to two years and may be extended for up to two years each time, up to a maximum total of six years.

Getting Work Visa in ID Infographic