Residence Card FrontThe Ministry of Interior (MoI) held a press conference today at the Civil Defence headquarters to announce the launch of new Residence Cards for expatriates in Qatar, starting 15 June 2015.

The new Residence Cards involves the abolition of Residence Permit (RP) stickers in passports and the current Identification Card (ID) card; therefore, the Residence Card will be a combination of both the RP and ID card into one card. The new cards will be the only valid ID cards for the resident expatriates in Qatar for proof of identity as well as residence validity.

The new Residence Cards are similar to the RP in format and applies the same fee. Applicants can choose either a normal Residence Card or smart Residence Card. The smart Residence Card will offer the same services rendered by the present smart ID card as per the request. Thew new Residence Cards will be renewed for one to five years depending on the category as per request for the same fee of the RP.

According to Assistant Director General of the General Directorate of Nationality, Passports and Expatriates Affairs, Brigadier Mohamed Ahmed Al Ateeq, the new system will be implemented gradually by issuing new residence cards for first time applicants and at the time of renewal of the RP or other documents for existing residents. Those who have valid RPs on their passports will not be given new residence cards before the expiry of their residence permit, except in case of change of passport.

Residence Card BackAll residence renewal application for government, public and private company sponsorships will be accepted only electronically (Metrash2, MoI website, e-government web portal) and the cards will be dispatched by post. For family and personal sponsorship, applications can be done online or physically at the MoI services centres.

In addition, for the first time, children will get a Residence Card which also serves as an ID card for them. For that purpose, children added on passports of their parents shall have spate passports as they will have their own Residence Cards.The new card system obliges the separation of children sharing their parents’ passports.

According to Captain Abdullah Khalifa Al Muhannadi, the new card system will ease procedures, save the passport pages of expats, reduce rush at MoI centres, and supports MoI’s vision to move to a paperless admin system.

Residents should show the Residence Card whenever entering and exiting Qatar. The MoI has informed all countries as well as the airline companies worldwide about Qatar’s new Residence Cards and to consider it as the official document to proof of residency in Qatar.