Explainer: What are Egypt's new residency regulations for foreigners?

Merna Hesham , Monday 6 Nov 2023

Egypt's Ministry of Interior has recently announced that the grace period for foreign residents residing unlawfully to adjust their status in Egypt is set to conclude on 15 December 2023.

FILE PHOTO: Tourists take Luxor-bound EgyptAir flight from Cairo International Airport in Cairo, Egypt


Egypt’s Official Gazette published the Ministry of Interior’s new rules and procedures regulating granting and renewing residency for foreigners in Egypt, including fees, and the legalization of illegal residents.

This came after Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly issued the decree on the new residency regulations in Egypt requiring foreigners applying for residency to convert the value of the relevant fees from US dollars or other hard currency to Egyptian pounds.

According to the recent figures issued by Egypt’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Egypt now hosts nearly nine million refugees and irregular migrants, who enjoy a decent life with freedom of movement and equal access to services alongside Egyptian citizens.

Below, Ahram Online provides a step-by-step guide for legalizing the stay of foreign residents in Egypt who are currently residing unlawfully or those whose residency has expired.

Residency Application Process:

To obtain or renew residency in Egypt, foreigners must follow a specific process outlined by the Official Gazette. Here are the steps to take:

  1. Submitting an application:
    Foreigners living in Egypt need to submit an application using the designated form provided by the Interior Ministry’s General Administration of Passports, Immigration, and Nationality. This application must be submitted at the Administration headquarters in Abbasiya, regardless of the applicant's place of residence within Egypt.
  2. Required transfer receipt:
    When submitting the application, it is mandatory to attach a currency transfer receipt. This receipt serves as proof of payment or transaction related to the residency application. It should cover the fees and costs associated with issuing residence cards or fines for violations. The amount stated on the receipt should be equivalent to US dollars or other free currencies, converted to the Egyptian pound.
  3. Obtaining the transfer receipt:
    Foreigners can obtain the required transfer receipt from public banks in Egypt or approved currency exchange companies. It is important to note that the validity of the receipt should not exceed 15 days from the date of the transfer.

Types of residence permits:

Different types of residence permits apply to foreigners in Egypt. Here are the key details:

  1. Special Residence Permit:
    Foreigners born in Egypt are eligible for a special residence permit. This permit grants a residence card valid for ten years.
  2. Ordinary Residence Permit:
    Foreign nationals are eligible to qualify for an ordinary residence permit. This permit grants a residence card valid for five years.
  3. Passport Requirement and Fees:
    Foreigners must hold a valid passport throughout the duration of their residence permit. Additionally, they must pay a fee of EGP500 per year for the license for private or regular residence. An additional amount of EGP500 is required for the costs of issuing the residence card.

For illegal residents:

For individuals residing illegally in Egypt, the following provisions apply:

  1. Legalization process:
    Illegal residents can "regularize their status and legitimize their residency" by having proof of an Egyptian host and paying S$1,000 in administrative fees to the General Administration of Passports, Immigration, and Nationality.
  2. Residence cards for those without passports:
    Foreigners without a passport or travel document, who are unable to obtain either, must obtain residence cards according to Form No. (5) marked with the granted lengths of residence.

Fees and fines:

  • EGP500 for reconciliation in the violation of the delay in registering residency.

  • EGP500 for delay in notifying changes in accommodation, departure, or employment.

  • EGP500 for reconciliation in the violation of failure to notify before changing place of residence.

  • EGP500 for reconciliation with the foreigner in the event that he/she does not obtain or renew the residence permit.

  • EGP500 for each residence permit or card or their renewal.

  • A fee of EGP10,000 to apply for Egyptian citizenship


Short link: