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7. RESIDENT VISA UNDER RESIDENTIAL GUEST SCHEME (RGS)

  • Who can get Sri Lankan Resident Visa under this programme ?
  • The RGS is a part of a package of incentives for prospective foreign investors and professionals who would contribute to the economic and socio-cultural development of the country.

    What is the Implementing Agency ?
    The Implementing Agency of the RGS consists of Senior Officials of the Relevant Government Agencies. The Office of the Implementing Agency is located at the Department of Immigration Emigration, 41, Ananda Rajakaruna Mw, Colombo 10, Sri Lanka.

    How can I apply for Sri Lankan visa under this programme ?
    The Resident Guest Scheme is open to all foreign nationals. Any foreign investor / professional who could contribute to the economic and socio cultural enrichment of the country can apply.

    Where can I obtain a Residence visa application form ?
    Application forms RGS I are available at
  • What are the documents I need to submit with my Residence visa application ?
  • Photocopies of relevant pages of Passport (or Travel Document) that contain particulars of the applicant and dependents.
  • Photocopy of the marriage certificate or marriage contract (if applicable)
  • Six photographs (6 cm x 5 cm)
  • Details of educational and professional qualifications and experience (if any) may be indicated in a separate sheet in quadruplicate.

Successful applicants will be required to undergo a medical examination and submit a report.

Can I bring my family with me if I get visa under this programme ?
Yes, If you are a qualified investor or professional you can bring in your spouse, dependent children and your parents or parents of your spouse.

What are the remittance limits ?
Investor Category
A potential foreign investor under this Scheme should remit a minimum of US $ 250,000 or an equivalent amount in any convertible foreign currency and deposit the funds in a special account in any commercial bank approved by the Central Bank of Sri Lanka. If an investor intends to commence any investment project jointly with another foreign partner or partners, each such person should invest a minimum of US $ 250,000 or an equivalent amount in any convertible foreign currency. A further sum of US $ 35,000 should be deposited for each dependent accompanying the investor. Interest will be paid on any unutilized balance held in deposit at such rates as are

  • determined by the Central Bank of Sri Lanka from time to time. Documentary evidence to confirm the remittances to Sri Lanka should be furnished. 
    In addition to the initial deposits, an investor should remit regularly sufficient funds for the upkeep of himself and his dependents.

    Professional Category
    A professional intending to reside in Sri Lanka under the scheme is required to remit, to a Special Bank Account in Sri Lanka for living expenses, a minimum of US$ 2,000/- per month for himself and US$ 1000/- per month for each of his dependents, including spouse. 

    Investment
    Funds remitted to Sri Lanka by any foreign investor should be invested in an approved project. If no satisfactory progress is made by the applicant in making investment in the country within the first two years of his residence in Sri Lanka, the Implementing Agency may cease to make any further payments of interest on the credit balance in the Special Account of the investor.

    Approved projects for the purpose of this Scheme are
  • New ventures subject to approval by the Board of Investment(BOI-web link) or a relevant Authority.
  • Existing or new companies subject to approval by the relevant authority.
  • Shares listed in the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE web link).
  • The Board of Investment will provide all assistance needed by the foreign investors to identify and make such investments.
  • Special Accounts
    Foreign investors under this Scheme are permitted to open two separate special accounts in any commercial bank in Sri Lanka as described below

    1. Resident Guest Foreign Currency Account
  • a) The remittances made to Sri Lanka for the purpose of making investments in any approved project in Sri Lanka should be credited to this account.
  • The Bank will pay interest during the initial period of two years on the unutilized balance in the Account at a rate which will not exceed the rate applicable to Non Resident Foreign Currency Accounts. Payments of interest after the expiry of the two-year period will be subject to the approval of the Implementing Agency.
  • Withdrawal from the Account for any purpose other than investment, should be approved by the Implementing Agency.
  • Interest paid on the balance in this Account may be transferred to the Resident Guest Rupee Current Account.
  • 2. Resident Guest Rupee Currency Account
  • Remittances made for living expenses in Sri Lanka, income derived from investments, sale proceeds of shares, etc. will be permitted to be credited to this account.
  • Outward remittances from the account will be subject to prior Exchange Control approval.
  • Repatriation of income capital
    The following outward remittances are allowed under the prevailing Exchange Control and Tax regulations.
  • Any unutilized balance in the special account of the investor.
  • Capital gains and income from investment.

Sale proceeds of investments.

  • What are the fees applicable to my Resident Guest Scheme visa ?
    In addition to the resident visa fees and taxes a sum of US $ 25or an equivalent amount in any convertible currency should be paid to the Implementing Agency 
    Please click here for information about visa fees

    Conditions for Resident Guests
    Resident Guests are required to;
  • Notify the Implementing Agency in writing of any material changes in particulars furnished in the application within two (2) months of such change.
  • Comply with Immigration and Emigration formalities of the Sri Lanka Government.
  • Comply with tax laws in Sri Lanka.
  • Comply with all the other laws and regulations of Sri Lanka Government.
  • Refrain from any political or other activity which is not in public interest or which might be prejudicial to the security of the country.
  • Produce a Police clearance certificate from his country.
  • In case of Termination of Investment Project / Professional Service by the Resident Guest
    Resident guests are required to
  • Give the Implementing Agency two (2) months notice in writing of their intention to terminate their investment project / professional service.
  • Notify in writing of their intention to leave Sri Lanka at least Fourteen (14) working days prior to their departure upon termination of their investment project / professional service.

Grant of Citizenship
A Resident Guest who intends to obtain Sri Lankan Citizenship may apply to the Implementing Agency upon completion of three (3) years of residence. Citizenship will be considered only on the basis of applicants contribution to the economic development and socio cultural enrichment of the country during the period of residence. Application form designed for the purpose may be obtained from the office of the Implementing Agency  or download www.immigration.gov.lk. 

Application processing fee may be sent by a Cheque/ Bank Draft drawn in favour of the Controller, Immigration and Emigration.

What are the eligibility requirements for a Resident Guest Scheme Visa ?
The Resident Guest Scheme is open for all foreign nationals. Any foreign investor or professional who could contribute to the economic and socio-cultural enrichment of the country can apply for visas under this scheme.

Where can I obtain a Resident Guest Scheme Visa application form ?
Head office of the Department of Immigration & Emigration, Colombo 
Overseas Sri Lankan Missions

Visitor Services Centre in Colombo
Download printable versions of the Application Forms here

How can I submit my Resident Guest Scheme visa application ?

You can submit your application in quadruplicate to the nearest Sri Lankan mission or please contact Visitor Services Centre for information and assistance.

There is no Sri Lankan mission close to where I live. What shall I do ?
You may contact Visitor Services Centre for information and assistance.

What is the maximum validity period of my Resident Guest Scheme visa ?
Your RGS Visa will be valid for five years.

How can I renew my Resident Guest Scheme visa ?
Applications for the extension of all visas should be made to the Department of Immigration and Emigration or please contact Visitor Services Centre for information and assistance. Proof of satisfactory performance of the project investments, bank statements etc. will be called for when extensions of visa is requested after completion of five years. 

Documentary evidence for tax clearance from the Department of Inland Revenue(web link) and the recommendation from the Board of Investment in the case of tax exempted project should be furnished along with the renewal application. 

Where can I get a Resident Guest Scheme visa renewal Application Form ?
Head office of the Department of Immigration & Emigration, Colombo or please contact Visitor Services Centre for information and assistance. 
Download printable versions of the Application Forms here

What are the other conditions applicable to renewal of my Resident Guest Scheme visa ?
Your intended stay in Sri Lanka should end at least two months before the expiry date of your travel document.

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