UAE – New Entrance and Residence Schemes for Foreigners

UAE – New Entrance and Residence Schemes for Foreigners

There is some excellent news for skilled foreign workers who are considering moving to the UAE in search of better opportunities. UAE’s cabinet has introduced a few changes to the golden visa scheme that will streamline the immigration process and enable foreigners to contribute more to the economy.

Expatriates comprise 80% of the population in the UAE and they have contributed immensely to the economy. With the new amendments to the golden visa scheme, present expatriates and skilled, aspiring job seekers can stay longer in UAE and enjoy countless benefits.

Additionally, these recent changes will boost UAE’s economic development, and enhance the talent pool while boosting the flexibility & stability of the job market. What are the salient features of the golden visa scheme?


Prominent features of the Golden Visa Scheme


Eligibility criteria and beneficiaries

  • Investors, entrepreneurs, individuals with special talents, scientists, skilled professionals, gifted students & graduates, humanitarian pioneers, and frontline workers in the healthcare industry are eligible for a ten-year visa.
  • Expatriates with a golden visa can sponsor their family members.
  • There are restrictions on traveling overseas or spending a specified time in UAE to ensure the visa’s validity.
  • You can also get a golden visa by investing in real estate worth 2 million dirhams. ($544,500)

Green residence

  • Freelancers and self-employed individuals can get a 5-year residence visa minus the need for a local sponsor/employer.
  • Investors/partners setting up a business or conducting commercial activities in the UAE will be eligible for a 5-year visa. Earlier, only 2-year visas were issued under this category.

New visa categories

The changes to the golden visa scheme include a 5-year residency visa that encourages talented individuals, skilled professionals, freelancers, entrepreneurs, and investors to consider the UAE.

UAE – New Entrance and Residence Schemes for Foreigners

60-day entry visas

These new 60-day entry visas can be issued for single or multiple entries. They can be re-issued for 60 days post expiration.

Job exploration entry visa

Under this visa category, there is no need for a sponsor or a host. Individuals who fall under the first or third level skill category are eligible for the job exploitation entry visa. (As per the HR ministry and Emiratization) Additionally, applicants must hold a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent.

Business entry visa

Serious investors and budding entrepreneurs can enter the UAE to set up a new business, explore commercial or investment opportunities without a sponsor/host. This step is aimed to increase startups and financial investments in the UAE.

Tourist visas

Applying for tourist visas is easier than ever before. With the changes in the golden visa scheme, one can get a 5-year tourist visa without any sponsor/host. An applicant needs to furnish evidence of $4,000 (or its equivalent) in his bank account.


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