Around 12 million foreign nationals arrived in Saudi Arabia in 2017 to visit, work or to do business or as pilgrims.
Abdulrahman Al-Yousef, Deputy Foreign Minister for Consular Affairs, said their ministry had issued 12 million visas in 2017.
Al-Watan Arabic daily was quoted as reporting on 21 February that out of these, 1.5 million were visit visas and 500,000 were business visas.
Al-Yousef, who was addressing the SMIC (Saudi Meetings Industry Convention), said that a business visa was valid for two years and allowed for multiple entries, said the Saudi Gazette.
The GaStat (General Authority for Statistics) numbers issued in January revealed that over 94,000 expat workers had exited from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in Q3 2017.
The number of expat workers in the public and private sectors in the third quarter of 2017 was 10.6 million, a fall from close to 10.79 million in the second quarter, a drop of about 94,390 workers between the months of July and September.
In the Q3 2017, totally about 509,180 work visas were issued. About 22.3 percent of visas were issued by the government sector, 39.9 percent by the private sector and around 37.8 percent visas were issued to hire domestic workers.
It was said that expatriates were leaving the country owing to the imposition of dependents fees and levies on foreign workers.
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