A residence visa is given for non Sri Lankans to get residence facilities under special circumstances. To obtain a residence visa, you need to enter Sri Lanka on an entry visa issued by a Sri Lanka diplomatic mission abroad. Entry visa will be issued by the Embassy only upon approval by the Controller General of Immigration and Emigration. You must mention clearly that you wish to apply for a residence visa when applying for the entry visa and submit the necessary supporting documents.
A tourist visa cannot be converted into a residence visa. There are eight categories which would fall under residence visa. It is important to understand the category that you belong before applying for residence visa.
- Employment Category
Under this category, project professionals who work on government projects or projects carried out by the Board of Investment (BOI) of Sri Lanka and their dependencies, professionals employed at banks, volunteers, professionals who work for Non-Governmental Organisations, Professionals employed at an institution or organisation under Diplomatic Missions in Sri Lanka or professionals employed in private companies including their dependents.
2. Investor Category
Investor category includes people who are willing to invest monetary capital in Sri Lanka, and investors who have already invested in Sri Lanka, and professionals who engage in business activities in Sri Lanka.
Religious category includes Religious leaders and members of the clergy, who can apply for visa under the Religious category.
This category includes university students, students in educational institutes approved by the government and students in other institutions in Sri Lanka.
5. Registered Indians covered by the 1954 Indo-Lanka Agreement.
6. Ex- Sri Lankans and their dependents
7. Family Members of a Sri Lankan
Family members include spouses and Children holding foreign nationality.
8. Diplomatic and Official visa
When the length of staying in the country is less than 90 days, diplomatic and official passport holders must apply for a short-term diplomatic or official visa.
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