To renew the Iqama, different professional qualification holders need registrations with specific Saudi Government Departments. Here we will talk about all the professions that require professional qualifications and their registrations for iqama renewal.
To live and work in any foreign country, an official government-issued permit/visa is required. In the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, this permit is known as the Iqama.
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The Iqama is your official identification document in Saudi Arabia, and all expatriates and their families are required to have this document. However, this Iqama is valid for a specific time and requires yearly renewal.
The Need For A Degree For Iqama Renewal
Previously, professional fields in Saudi Arabia were unregulated. This lack of check and balance resulted in an influx of quacks and, in cases of fields like medicine, even dangerous people in the country.
Thus, to protect the nation’s people, the Saudi Government decided to take strict measures and enforce professional degree requirements for sensitive professions.
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Almost all the health and science-related jobs in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia now require professional degree qualifications. These include the apparent professions and some less obvious ones too. These professions include, for example,
- Doctors/Physicians/Surgeons (All Specializations),
- Dentist (All Specializations),
- Nurses (All Specializations),
- Health Technicians,
- Dental Hygienist,
- Medical Technologists,
- Physical Therapists,
- Food Scientists,
- Lab and X-ray Technicians, and
Many of these professions also require registration from Saudi Commission For Health Specialties or SCFHS.
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The Saudi Council for Engineers has published a comprehensive list of all engineering jobs that require professional degree qualifications for registration and Iqama renewal. This list includes almost 42 professions. For example:
- Chief Engineers
- Urban Planning Engineers
- Project Engineers
- Metal Structures Engineers
- Dams Engineers
- Installation and Distributions Engineers
- Prevention and Transmissions Engineers
- Casting, Welding, and Hydraulics Engineers
- Vehicles and Nuclear power Engineers
- Mines and Materials Engineers Etc.
There is a Long list of Technical professions that also require registration with the Saudi Council of Engineers for Iqama renewal. You can find the comprehensive list on the SCE website, but some of the professions are listed below:
- Marine Mapping Technician
- Quantity Surveyor
- Electrical Draftsman
- Mechanical Draftsman
- Electrical Designs Draftsman
- Electronic Technician – Communications
- Medical Equipment Technician
- Electronic Technician – TV Maintenance
- Sewage Treatment Plant Technician
- Water & Sewage Technician
- Sound Technician
- Lighting Technician
- Building Surveyor
- Road surveyor
- Architectural Draftsman
- General Surveyor
- Mine Surveyor
- Photographic Surveyor
- Architectural Model Maker
- Construction Draftsman / Buildings
- Building Technician /Building Supervisor
- Road Technician /Road Supervisor
- Cartography First Supervisor
Professions That Need SOCPA Membership
SOCPA is the Saudi Organization for Certified Public Accountants. All ex-pats in finance-related jobs, including accountants and auditors, require membership of SOCPA for Iqama renewal.
Professions that require SOCPA registration include:
- Internal Audit Director.
- Cost Clerk.
- Cost Accountant.
- Finance Clerk.
- General Accountant.
- Director Zakat & Taxes Department.
- Internal Auditor.
- Manager, Accounts, and Budget.
- Financial Auditor
- Cost clerk & Accountant
- Accounts Auditing Clerks
- Financial Controllers
- Chief of Internal Auditing programs
- Technician of General Accounts
- Auditor of Accounts
- Director of Financial Reports
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Currently, only three professional registration bodies are operating in Saudi Arabia: SCFHS, SCE, and SOCPA. The list of professions requiring their Iqama renewal registration is regularly updated.