New UAE visa system

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Staff Writer, TLR

Published on July 14, 2023, 17:41:00


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UAE is rated as one of the most visited countries with just 7.12 million visitors in half of 2022. Hence, the UAE government has opened the doors to welcome these visitors by introducing new visa rules. The rules attract skilled professionals, freelancers, investors and job-seekers.

These rules are said to be a landmark in the country's history for immigration and residency policy-making. The Federal Authority for Identity, Citizenship, Customs and Port Security (ICP) has made a trial run for an “advanced visa system” and has launched the third-generation UAE passport.

Different Visas and Changes 

Green Visas: Earlier, there was a mandate to have a sponsor if you want to be a skilled employee but the new rules provide 5-year residency for skilled workers and employees without any need for a sponsor or employer. This opens opportunities for freelancers and investors whose minimum cap salary is at least Dh 15,000 per month and who have a valid employment contract.

Visit Visas: Single and multiple entry visas can now be renewed for a longer period. The limit for stay has been increased from 30 days to 60 days. Now, the job exploration visa does not require a sponsor and is granted to those in the category of I, II or III skill level as per the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratization and fresh graduates of the best 500 universities in the world. Also, this can allow easier access to UAE’s 10-year Golden Visa scheme. 

This refers to visas offered to gifted students, exceptionally skilled foreign workers and people with public investments of at least Dh 10 million, who can live in the country without the need for a national sponsor. Nor does a five-year multi-entry tourist visa require a sponsor and a visitor can stay up to 90 days with an approved extension beyond which may not exceed 180 days per year. Proof of US$4,000 or its equivalent in foreign currencies in bank balance is necessary for 6 months before applying for this visa.

Golden Visa Scheme: There has been a drop in the minimum monthly salary from Dh 50,000 to Dh 30,000 for skilled professionals to get long-term residency. Various careers include medicine, sciences and engineering, information technology, business and administration, education, law, culture and social sciences. The only requirement is a valid employment contract and I or II occupational level as per the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratization.

Family Sponsorship Rules:  The age of sons has been raised for sponsorship to 25 years from 18 years with no age limit for unmarried daughters. Children of residence can be granted a residence permit irrespective of their age and Green residency can even sponsor their first-degree relatives.

In conclusion, the new rules ease the restrictions for visas and also enhance UAE’s vision to welcome visitors and professionals for a longer period.

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