Revamped E-7-4 skilled worker visa is in effect
Thanks to the Ministry of Justice’s “K-Point E74” visa program, more foreign workers can work in industries to enhance national competitiveness. The E-7-4 visa allows skilled workers to apply for continuous extensions without leaving the country.
The government will issue 35,000 E-7-4 visas this year, a significant increase from last year’s 2,000. The move also increases the percentage of foreign employees that may constitute a company’s workforce.
Under the program, the Busan City government will issue 162 E-7-4 visas to shore up labor shortages in the community.
The visa is available to foreign nationals who have worked legally in Korea for four years or longer on an E-9, E-10 or H-2 visa. They must also have an employment contract of at least two years and be recommended by a company where they have worked for more than a year. The new E-7-4 visa holder is required to work at their current company for a minimum of 2 years.
In addition, individuals must obtain at least 200 points (including additional points) from a 300-point system and meet the minimum 50-point threshold for average annual income and Korean language proficiency.
As part of the new immigration strategy, E-7-4 visa holders who have worked legally in Korea for five years and meet income requirements can apply for an F-2 or F-5 visa in phases.
The “K-Point E74” visa program also outlines conditions that disqualify an individual. Foreign nationals who have been sentenced to a punishment of 1 million won or more, are in tax arrears, have violated the Immigration Act more than four times, have previously stayed in the country illegally, or are deemed harmful to the public will be unable to obtain the visa.
The application period for E-7-4 visas will continue until Dec. 20, 2023. Individuals can apply through Hi Korea (hikorea.co.kr). Direct inquiries to the Immigration Contact Center (1345).