New UAE visa rules transform the ease of doing business




The UAE Cabinet announced several new visa rules to enhance business in the UAE.

Last month, the UAE Cabinet already approved sweeping changes, including a 10-year residency visa and 100 % foreign ownership for businesses outside the free zone. 

Now, the UAE Cabinet decided on further modifications to transform the ease of doing business in the UAE. His Highness Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum announced the new visa legislation for employees in the private sector, residents, students and transit tourists.

Bank guarantee replaced by low-cost insurance

The UAE Cabinet decided to stop the mandatory bank guarantee for employees and replace it with a low-cost insurance system. The current security deposits of 3,000 AED per worker will be substituted by an insurance for only 60 AED per worker per year. The insurance coverage amounts to 20,000 AED and shall cover the workers’ end of service gratuity, return air ticket, vacation allowance, overtime allowance, unpaid wages and cases of work injury. 

The new insurance system aims to secure workers’ rights in the private sector and reduces the employer’s burden. The replacement of security deposits with a low-cost insurance system allows businesses to recover about 14 billion AED in guarantees, freeing up needed capital for business investments.

Temporary visa for job seekers

The UAE Cabinet announced a new 6-month visa to support those who have lost their jobs. Job seekers who overstayed their visa but wish to work in the UAE will profit from the new temporary visa. It also enhances the UAE’s goal to become a destination for talents and skilled professionals.

Further new visa rules

The Cabinet also approved further new visa regulations for visitors, residents, students and people overstaying their visa. The highlights are as follows:

• 2-year visa for talented and outstanding students after their graduation
• 48-hour visa for transit tourists without charge and an extension for up to 96 hours for 50 AED
• Voluntarily leave without a ban for those who overstayed their visa or illegally entered the UAE

The new visa legislation aims to transform the ease of doing business. It enhances business in the UAE through an attractive economy, being based on flexibility, openness and in line with changing trends.