Peru is an interesting economy with growing mining, energy and infrastructure sectors. Compared to Chile, the Peruvian market is less mature and in many cases has fewer service providers. This has provided international companies with the opportunity to provide new technologies or services to these growing sectors.
Over the last year we have had a number of clients who have won contracts in Peru. The problem we have seen is that, in many cases, these contracts require specialised foreign workers on site before the company can set up a new entity, set up a bank account or hire local staff.
Remember, setting up a company takes time in most Latin American countries…
So, the question arises: What can a company do if they need foreign specialised staff on the ground before legal formalities can be completed?
FOREIGN WORKER FROM A NON-RESIDENT COMPANY
Such immigration status is granted to foreign workers who are sent to Peru by a non-resident employer in order to render contractual services on the employer’s behalf.
Both companies must enter into a service agreement based on which the company domiciled abroad agrees to provide a certain type of service to the company domiciled in Peru. Upon executing this service agreement, the company domiciled abroad can transfer some of its workers to Peru.
A foreign citizen who obtains this immigration status shall have the right to work legally for three (3) months and can be extended up to one (1) year. After the first year elapses, a new visa must be obtained.
DESIGNATED WORKER OF FOREIGN COMPANY VISA
To obtain the Designated Employee of Foreign Company Visa, the non-resident company will need to work through a number of steps and provide certain documents.
Below is a very high-level overview of what is required:
- Service contract or technical assistance contract between the non-resident company and the local company or national contract;
- Certificate of work experience for the employee;
- An appointment letter issued by the non-resident company; and
- An acceptance letter from the recipient company.
In case, it is not possible to have the documents before the arrival of the foreign workers, the proceeding before Immigrations will have to be completed when they arrive in Peru.
The proceeding can take on average between 3 and 4 weeks if the arrangements are made while the foreign workers are outside the country. It can take 4 to 6 weeks, if the proceedings are performed when the foreigners are in Peru.
There are many considerations that need to be accounted for when entering new markets but there are generally practical solutions that can be implemented.
As with any new market, it is important to have an idea of the real timelines it takes to get an entity set up and operating. It is great to read the different ¨doing business in…¨; but these often do not give the practical, on-the-ground advice that companies truly need.
For example, did you know that in Chile, Colombia and Peru it can take around a month to set up a bank account? Most people are surprised to learn this but we will leave that topic for another blog entry.
Harris Gomez Group focuses on providing our clients with practical advice. We understand that your number one priority is growing your business in the most practical, cost efficient way possible. Do not hesitate to contact our offices if we can assist you in anyway.