resident guest scheme
the resident guest scheme has been introduced by the sri lanka government as 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.
the implementing agency of the resident guest scheme consists of senior officials of the relevant government agencies. the office of the implementing agency is located at the department of immigration & emigration [die], 41, ananda rajakaruna mw, colombo 10, sri lanka.
how to apply
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 make an application on form rgs i in quadruplicate.
application forms are available from
- office of the implementing agency [die]
- sri lanka missions abroad or
- download from the website (www.immigration.gov.lk)
an application should be accompanied by the following documents.
- photocopies of relevant pages of (or travel document) that contain particulars of the applicant and dependents.
- photocopy of the marriage certificate or marriage contract (if applicable)
- six photographs (6 x 5 cm)
- details of educational and professional qualifications and experience (if any) may be indicated in aseparate sheet in quadruplicate.
- successful applicants will be required to undergo a medical examination and submit a report.
a qualified investor / professional can bring in his spouse, dependent children and the parents of the applicant and / or his spouse.
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 a 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.
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.
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 or a relevant authority.
- existing or new companies subject to approval by the relevant authority.
- shares listed in the colombo stock exchange.
the board of investment will provide every assistance needed by the foreign investors to identify and make such investments.
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
- 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 form the account for any purpose other than investment, should be approved by the
- 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.
repatration 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.
in addition to the resident visa fees and taxes charged by the controller of immigration and emigration, a sum of us $ 250 or an equivalent amount in any convertible currency should be paid to the implementing agency as application processing fee.
duties of 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.
termination of investment project / professional
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 on 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 [die].
application processing fee may be sent by a cheque / bank draft drawn in favour of the controller, immigration and emigration.
resident visa valid for five years will be issued to successful applicant / spouse and dependents. proof of satisfactory performance of the project investments, bank statements etc. will be called for when extensions visa is requested after the lapse of five years.
documentary evidence for tax clearance from the department of inland revenue and the recommendation from the board of investment in the case of tax exempted project should be furnished along with the renewal application.
organization informationdepartment of immigration & emigration
ms. m. u. i. alahakoon