Business visa is a visa for foreign nationals that wish to conduct business activities or study the market in Indonesia. It doesn’t allow being locally employed and if you plan to then read our work permit article.
While it is considerably easier to get a business visa than a work permit, there are still several conditions a foreign national needs to meet in order to be eligible for the visa.
How long can you stay in Indonesia with a business visa?
Business visa allows a foreign national to stay in Indonesia for up to 60 days per visit.
Once the person has at least three Indonesian visa stamps (can be any type of Indonesian visa), it’s possible to apply for a multiple entry business visa which is granted for 12 months.
This is a great option for visiting Indonesia frequently but it still enables maximum 60 days of stay with each arrival. However, the benefit is that the same visa can be used unlimited times to arrive to the country.
Business visa sponsorship
All business visas must be sponsored by a legal entity registered in Indonesia. Both foreign– and locally owned companies, representative offices and institutions can act as sponsors.
As mentioned before, this visa strictly forbids any kind of local employment.
In case a foreign national does not have a local sponsor or does not wish to use them, it’s also possible to use Indosight as a sponsor company. Our consultant will advise you whether we are able to act as your sponsor.
Only limited amount of visas are approved
Before the foreign national can even apply for the business visa, the sponsor company must submit visa invitation to Indonesian Immigration.
This is the trickiest part of the process since only 500 invitations are approved each working day. Once that quota is full no other applications will be even considered.
Therefore it’s crucial that the sponsor company either knows exactly how to submit an invitation to the Immigration or has another company such as ourselves doing it on behalf of them. Any small mistake would mean a delay.
It generally takes 3-5 working days for Indonesian Immigration to handle the invitation and telex it overseas.
Applying for the business visa in the Indonesian embassy
Once the sponsor has successfully obtained an invitation to the Immigration it will be sent to an Indonesian embassy of your choice. For foreign nationals that are already in Indonesia the most common choices are Singapore and Kuala Lumpur but you can choose any Indonesian embassy.
Note that the actual visa application process happens here and the sponsor invitation was just a precondition for that. But if you have the approved invitation then there won’t be any reason for the embassy to reject the visa.
The embassy will take about 3 working days to process your visa. Therefore we suggest starting the business visa invitation and application process at least 2 weeks before your expected arrival to Indonesia, even though a week would be sufficient in most cases.
Nationalities that are not eligible or have constraints for business visa
Indonesian Immigration does not approve business visa invitations for the following nationalities: Afghan, Guinean, Israeli, Iraqi, North Korean, Cameroonian, Liberian, Nigerian, Pakistani, Somali.
It is technically possible to get business visa if you are one the aforementioned nationals but your sponsor will have to go to Immigration office for an interview and the whole process is more complicated and out of the scope of this article.
Note that having residence permit or a company in another country won’t ease the process. E.g. if you have a Pakistan passport but have been conducting business in Malaysia for years you would still be considered as any other Pakistan national.