The UAE continues its stride in the ideal destinations for entrepreneurship, investment, work, and education by introducing a restructuring of its residence system.  The new visa regime is the Green Visa which grants amazing perks to its holders including the ability to sponsor children and parents among other benefits.

Recently the United Arab Emirates has announced a new type of visa referred to as a Green Visa. It is believed, the UAE is introducing this Visa category in order to reduce their reliance on the oil industry as well as boost the methods to generate an economy.  Moreover, other Arab countries such as Saudi Arabia and Qatar have opened up their countries to wealthy investors. Reforms have been made for the permanent residency programs.

While details are still scarce, here you’ll know everything about the UAE Green Visa. Let’s take a look at the details of this move and know-how is the green Visa is helpful and essential for foreigners.

What is UAE’s green visa?

The UAE’s Green Visa allows expatriates for applying in the country without any company sponsorship.

  • There is a great need to know that green Visa holders are able to sponsor their parents and children up to the age of 25.
  • The government allows a grace period of up to 180 days who have lost their jobs.
  • To open up the job market, the hiring of temporary workers above 15 years of age has been allowed.
  • Details regarding the duration of the visa will be announced soon by the government.

Similar programs launched in the past

We all know that foreign nationals make up a massive part of the UAE’s population. They work in the private sector as well boost the economy by buying property and other goods from the country’s enormous malls. However, the government has recently been inviting them for permanent citizenship.

In 2019, the UAE launched the 10-year Golden Visa that offers long-term residency to highly skilled people like entrepreneurs, investors, researchers, medical professionals, and those who are in the scientific and knowledge fields. It is fascinating to know that people holding this visa can live, work as well as study in the country without needing national sponsorship. Similar programs have been also launched in other gulf countries such as Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

Why now?

Though expatriates make more than 80% of the UAE’s population, residency regulations, as well as work, allows for them to remain controlled. However, it is slowly changing with the government warming up to the idea of regulatory hurdles for the investors. You must keep in consideration that, the recent COVID-19 pandemic has furthered the woes of Middle Eastern economies struggling from low oil prices.

The UAE is competing with regional economic rival Saudi Arabia. It has announced reforms aimed at upping its status. According to a report, the Saudi government has said, from Jan. 1, 2024, it will no longer going to sign government contracts with foreign companies that base Middle East headquarters. Under Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman Al Saud, the country had unveiled the ambitious Vision 2030 plan to foreign talent.

It’s not the first time UAE has announced changes in order to permit provisions. In 2019, the golden visa was aimed to welcome rich residents and skilled workers.

How is ‘Green Visa’ different from other UAE visas?

Holders of UAE’s Green Visa will be permitted to work in the UAE without sponsorship. Earlier, it needed a prospective worker to be sponsored through an employer who apply for a work permit from the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratization.

The Green Visa allows the visa holders to sponsor their parents.

It’s going to increase the cap on the age of children who are sponsored by the holder from 18- 25 years.

The new scheme will allow the holder a grace period of up to three months in order to look for a new job in case they lose their old one.

What does it mean for foreign workers?

Under the green visa, foreigners are allowed to work in the UAE without being sponsored. These are work permits along with residency for entrepreneurs, pioneers, as well as other professionals. A freelance visa will also help them work independently without any trouble.

Green visa holders will also be able to sponsor the sons’ visas till they turn 25. Usually, sons are sponsored till they turn 18. However, they can also sponsor their parents.

The government said it will allow people who have lost their jobs to remain in the country for three months.

The country’s Minister of State for Foreign Trade Thani al-Zeyoudi said green visa is for business people, highly skilled investors, entrepreneurs, exceptional students and postgraduates.

There seems no clarity on when the Green visa will come into effect with the details of how to apply for it.

Why is the UAE govt giving out Green visa?

Resource-rich Gulf countries like the UAE want to diversify their economies. They want to reduce reliance on oil. The coronavirus pandemic has significantly impacted the tourism and businesses in the UAE, whose economy was slumping in recent years because of low oil prices. The 10-year Golden visa was offered to attract highly skilled and wealthy workers, the first such scheme in the Gulf.

Riyadh said in June 2019, it will offer permanent residency for 800,000 riyals. It‘ll allow the ex-pats to do business and buy property without a sponsor. Along with this, Doha also flung open its property market for the foreigners with a scheme.

It is essential to keep in consideration, foreigners account for 90 percent of the 10 million population in the UAE that is considered the Arab world’s second-largest economy after Saudi Arabia.
The UAE is seeking over 550 billion dirhams of inward foreign investment for the next 9 years. Moreover, it aims to be among the 10 global investment destinations by 2030. It will focus on investments from various countries like Russia, China, Australia, and the UK.

Major benefits of UAE’s Green Visa

  1. Under the Green visa, the people coming to UAE from foreign countries are allowed to work in the country without being sponsored.
  2. It will be a marked change from the rule requiring a prospective worker to be sponsored by an employer who applies for a work allow from the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratization.
  3. Green Visa enables the Visa holders to sponsor their parents too.
  4. It can increase the cap on the children’s age who can be sponsored from ages 25 onwards that was 18 earlier.
  5. With the help of a green visa, the holder can also be given a grace period of three months for finding a new job in case they lose. Under the previous policy, any worker has just 30 days to leave the UAE in case they are fired.
  6. UAE plans to invite entrepreneurs, businessmen, students, investors, and many of these categories of people for investing in their country. They are clear when the Visa would come into effect.
  7. According to the official report, the launch of the Green Visa regime is a part of the UAE government’s efforts in order to attract exceptional talents. It’s best for propel economic growth.

Significant Reasons behind Green Visa scheme

The Green Visa move by the UAE is significantly important for attracting the right talent pool to its burgeoning economy.

It comes as a significant part of a wider array of measures that are introduced by the Arab world in order to boost the economy as well as reduce reliance on oil.

The focus is shifting from oil to academic excellence, Artificial intelligence, and space research.

Who is the UAE Green Visa for?

The UAE Green Visa is significantly launched to facilitate the expansion of self-residency status for entrepreneurs, highly qualified people, and investors. The Green visa is also best for the top students and graduates who aspire for working and living in the UAE.

Freelancers are also encouraged to ply their trade. Self-employed workers based in the UAE in specialist fields like Blockchain, digital currencies, and Artificial Intelligence, are welcome to apply.

New freelance visas have also been launched with green visas. These are set to make residency in the UAE more flexible. The reason is, most residency visas are tied to employer sponsorship. Meanwhile, freelance visas are also granted to owners of independent businesses as well as self-employed individuals.

A further change allows the children over the age of 15 to work for the first time. you must know that a temporary work permit allows them to secure a part-time job as well as get a taste for the workplace. The decision is highly significant and brings about a culture of part-time as well as temporary work.

Requirements of the UAE Green Visa

Details regarding the multiple requirements of the UAE Green Visa have not become available. However, we’ll keep you updated as soon as further information surfaces.

What is the fee for UAE Green Visa?

The overall cost for the visa has yet to be released. We’ll update the information as soon as the government released new updates on this matter.

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