The UAE has announced massive changes to its visa system, introducing a five-year tourist visa and several new types of visas, while expanding the Golden Visa programme. The UAE Cabinet, headed by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, has approved the executive regulations of the Federal Decree-Law on Entry and Residence of Foreigners, aimed at strengthening the country’s position as an ideal destination to live, work, and invest.
The new system of entry and residence aims at attracting and retaining global talents and skilled workers from all over the world, boosting the competitiveness and flexibility of the job market and fostering a high sense of stability among UAE residents and families, said a Wam news agency report.
The new system offers the UAE visitors a variety of visa types for different visit purposes. New types of visas are introduced without requiring a host or sponsor for the first time. Major improvements include facilitating the entry requirements for all visa types, offering flexible visa durations that meet the needs of the visitors and the purpose of the visit. In addition, all entry visas are available for single or multiple entry and can be renewed for similar period(s) and are valid for 60 days from their issuance date.
In addition to the regular tourist visa that is sponsored by tourism establishment in the UAE, a five-year multi-entry tourist visa has been introduced. This type of visa does not require a sponsor and it allows the person to stay in the country up to 90 continuous days, and it may be extended for a similar period, provided that the entire period of stay does not exceed 180 days in one year.
This visa requires proof of having a bank balance of $4,000 or its equivalent in foreign currencies during the last six months prior to submitting the application. The new rules also have relaxed entry permits to vist relatives and friends. As per the new amendment, a visitor can apply for this entry permit if he/she is a relative or friend of a UAE citizen or resident. It does not require a sponsor or a host.