There is a significant number of countries whose citizens can enter Bosnia and Herzegovina without any visa requirement. In the majority of cases it is allowed to stay in Bosnia and Herzegovina for 60 – 90 days in a period of 6 months. All citizens from EU can stay up to 90 days in a period of 6 months without a visa. Foreigners entering Bosnia and Herzegovina should possess BAM 150 (approximately EUR 77) per day.
For citizens who needs visa approval, there is a special form which should be fulfilled and submitted ether in their countries or in specific cases when entering Bosnia and Herzegovina.
There are no specific or unusual conditions for getting visa approval, comparing to other countries in the region.
All relevant information and changes in the list of countries whose citizens can enter Bosnia and Herzegovina without visa can be found at the web page of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Bosnia and Herzegovina (www.mvp.gov.ba/konzularne_informacije/vize/default.aspx).
In accordance with labor regulations, foreign citizens have the same rights as Bosnia and Herzegovina citizens. For certain positions like work in state administration, only Bosnia and Herzegovina citizens can work.
Citizens from other counties can start working in Bosnia and Herzegovina after obtaining two kinds of permits:
Foreign citizen will acquire at the police office a so called ‘white card’ residence registration certificate when entering Bosnia and Herzegovina. After receiving that document, the request for a work permit is to be submitted and when the work permit is received, the residence permit can be issued.
The employer submits the request for the work permit to the relevant employment authority. Certain documents should be submitted, e.g. basic information regarding the foreign citizen, passport copy, court registration of the employer, proof of paid tax obligations, information regarding the work position and an explanation on why the foreign citizen should be employed at that specific position etc.
If there are Bosnia and Herzegovina citizens registered as unemployed and are fulfilling conditions for that work position, the request for work permit could be rejected. This condition will not be applicable to foreign investors or foreign citizens who have founded a company.
The work permit is issued for a maximum period of one year. It could be prolonged annually without any limitation. In any case it cannot last longer than the residence permit.
There are certain engagements for which a work permit is not needed, in most cases these positions are temporary (up to 3 months). However, work wttestations should be obtained instead of a Work permit in these cases, in a much simpler and faster procedure.
Foreign citizens working in Bosnia and Herzegovina should apply for a temporary residence permit (valid up to one year maximum). The temporary residence permit could be prolonged without limitations.
The temporary residence permit for work reasons will be approved after delivery of following documents:
A foreign citizen cannot sign an employment contract or start working based on only a work permit. A temporary residence permit has to be obtained as well. The Work and Temporary residence permits are linked, meaning that the Temporary residence permit is approved based on the Work permit for a specific work position and only for that work position.
Work permits are issued at a local level while Temporary residence permits are issued at the state level.
Pursuant to the applicable laws on employment of foreigners and laws on entry and movement of foreigners, shareholders and investors which are not company representatives or employed in the local company, do not need to obtain a Work permit or Temporary residence permit.
Temporary residence permits can also be issued for various reasons, not only for employment reasons based on an issued Work permit, such as educational reasons, humanitarian reasons, living with family members etc.