The United Arab Emirates has created a new class of visas aimed at removing the barriers that foreigners experience while seeking work in the nation.
The new “green visa” category is part of a broader set of initiatives taken by Arab countries to grow their economies and lessen their dependency on oil. Apart from the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar have lately liberalised their paid permanent residency programmes and property ownership laws to attract affluent investors.
Foreigners will be able to work in the UAE without being sponsored by an employer under the green visa. This will be a significant departure from the current procedure, which requires a potential worker to be sponsored by an employer, who then applies to the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation for a work visa.
Green visa holders will be allowed to sponsor their parents. It would also raise the age limit for youngsters who may be sponsored by the holder from 18 to 25.
The initiative will also provide the holder a three-month grace time to hunt for new employment if they lose their current one. If a person was dismissed under the prior rules, he or she had just 30 days to depart the country.
According to an AFP article, the country’s Minister of State for Foreign Trade Thani al-Zeyoudi stated the visa is aimed at “highly talented persons, investors, business people, entrepreneurs, as well as excellent students and postgraduates.”
However, the exact day on which the visa will take effect is unknown. Details on how to apply for it are also unknown.
Despite the fact that expats account for more than 80% of the UAE’s population, their residence and employment permits are strictly enforced. This is gradually changing, as the government becomes more open to the concept of lowering regulatory barriers for rich expats and investors. The latest coronavirus outbreak has exacerbated the problems faced by the Middle Eastern economy, which is already suffering from low oil prices.
The UAE is also competing with Saudi Arabia, a regional economic adversary that has proposed changes aimed at enhancing its standing as an industrial powerhouse. According to Bloomberg, the Saudi government has announced that from January 1, 2024, it would no longer sign government contracts with global corporations having Middle East offices outside the kingdom. The government also presented the grandiose Vision 2030 plan, which aims to open up the country to global talent, under Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman Al Saud.
This is not the first time in recent years that the UAE has announced adjustments to permission conditions. The UAE introduced a 10-year “golden visa” in 2019, aimed at attracting wealthy citizens and highly talented professionals to the nation. Similar plans have been implemented in Saudi Arabia and Qatar as well.
Source: The Indian Express