Immigration. Travel. Living.

Finding a job in Kyrgyzstan as an expat

The Kyrgyz Republic is a nation in Central Asia bordered by Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, and the People’s Republic of China. Its capital and largest city are Bishkek. With a population of 7 million on a land mass of 199,951 km², the republic is in the heart of Asia. Being a republic, federal employment laws apply to its banking, transportation, telecommunications sectors, etc. A large percentage of its workforce is engaged in mining, services, and agriculture. Thanks to the demand for more English speakers here, the common type of work available to foreigners is teaching. It is among the fifty countries in the world with the highest level of corruption. Ranking 118th in the Human Development Index, it is the second poorest country in Central Asia with an economy largely reliant on the mining of gold, coal, and uranium.

aerial view of city buildings during daytime

Finding a job as an expat

Looking for employment in a foreign country is a bit complex. It is time-consuming and costs a lot. If one is looking for employment in Kyrgyzstan , there are certain factors to put in mind. Job postings are available online on recruiting websites, job apps, and, even in local newspapers. 

Employment contract

A work contract must include the terms of the job such as the responsibilities, benefits, and termination requirements. It should be a contract duly signed by both parties. The forms of contracts available are non-fixed-term contracts for 3 to 6 months and fixed-term contracts which have a specific expiration date. An employer can choose to renew the contract or not. The maximum time is 6 months. 

Working hours 

Three options for work duration namely regular, reduced, or part-time exist. A regular working hour may not surpass 40 hours a week. While shifting hours last 5 hours, 7 hours, and 2.5 to 3.5 hours for working students. The general daily work time is 8 hours a day. 

Working overtime

In the event of overtime, payments are based on the consensual agreement between the employer and employee. Working overtime for more than 16 hours is not allowed. The maximum number of days for overtime is two days. 

Visa  

To apply for a work visa, applicants should visit the e-visa website of Kyrgyzstan and complete the form. There are two types of work visas that one can apply for W1 Visa and a W2 Visa. The form is issued to an expat who wishes to gain a work permit in the country, or an individual searching for a job. The latter is issued to an applicant who does not require a work permit to work, based on the Law of the Kyrgyz Republic. These employment visas are usually issued by the embassies and consular offices in the home country of an expat, or at the Manas international airport. They are issued as either double or single-entry visas for the duration of the job usually stated in the confirmation of appointment. When a foreigner gets a job in the country, he or she receives a confirmation of invitation. This is the document used by expats or third-country citizens to obtain employment visas from a Kyrgyz embassy or consular office. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs issues the confirmation of the invitation. Work visas are issued no longer than 3 months. 

Jobs available for expats

Finding work in the republic is difficult because job vacancies are usually not posted online. Fluency in Arabic and Russian is a necessity in the state so, foreigners who cannot speak any, are at a disadvantage. Although teachers are not paid high salaries, the standard of living in the country is relatively low. The best option to save income is to look for work that provides accommodation as a benefit. 

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