The UAE enforces residency rules by offering passports to wealthy foreigners


The airline boss, tech entrepreneur and former Real Madrid footballer, is a Gulf state due to the development of long-term relations with Gulf expatriate workers to give UAE nationality.

The issuance of passports to dozens of foreigners in recent months is a significant change from the traditional traditional way of treating UAE expatriates, who were encouraged to leave the region after completing their work.

Now the government, encouraged by the success of the Covid-19 vaccination program, hopes to force more wealthy people to stay home in an effort to increase domestic spending and maintain property values.

“We want people to bring Abu Dhabi home,” said Mohammed al-Shorafa al-Hamdadi, chairman of the UAE Capital Economic Development Department. “The idea is that you are not here for a short time, you are here to grow up. . . Through leisure. “

In the first batch to be awarded the passport, Sir Tim Clarke, the experienced president of Emirates in Dubai, and Tony Douglas, the chief executive of Etihad Airways in Abu Dhabi, were briefed on the decision. Michel Salgado, a Spanish footballer who runs a football club in Dubai, also received a passport. They all declined to comment.

Others include the founders of two successful UAE start-ups: Crime, a ride-hailing application bought by Uber, and ecommerce group Souk.com, acquired by Amazon. They all declined to comment.

Citizens of the UAE can travel to the Gulf states without a visa and acquire property anywhere in the region, not in areas designated for foreign buyers.

“It simply came to our notice then. I now know where I will retire, ”said an expatriate from UAE who asked to remain anonymous.

Louvre Museum in Abu Dhabi © Christopher Pike / Bloomberg

In celebration of the UAE’s fiftieth anniversary, the seven-member federal government unveiled an epidemic and economic and social reforms that seek to rehabilitate the Gulf state for an epidemic future.

The departure of foreign workers at the onset of the coronavirus epidemic, which S&P estimated at 8.4 percent of Dubai’s population, was a clear reminder that expatriate families could be expelled from the UAE if the main earner loses a job.

“The changes we’re making now are for the next half-century,” one person said of the strategy.

Other measures include a 10-year “golden visa” for thousands of professional expatriates and their families, which officials say could pave the way for a more structured long-term housing program. “They’re giving them like hot cakes,” said one consultant.

Migrant workers currently have to pay up to about ২ 2,000 per year for related expenses, including residency visas and HIV / AIDS testing.

A new visa has been introduced that allows foreigners to retire in the UAE. The region is ready to change long-term rules and keep foreigners directly owned by businesses without the need for emirate partners.

Other possible changes include the decriminalization of homosexuality, a move that brings the UAE in line with Western customs and the opening of casinos to bolster the tourism sector. The Dubai government last month refused to grant it a gambling license.

Both of these prohibited reforms could discriminate between conservative emirates. Some citizens are already fearing that extending foreigners’ right to housing will turn into a country where expatriates make up about 90% of the 10-meter population.

Yet the government is determined to stick to its reforms and ignore the personal criticism of some citizens. Public denial is very rare in the UAE, where security services take a zero-tolerance approach to dissent.

Monica Malik, chief economist at Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, said: “The reforms cover areas that were previously seen as boundaries, showing a promise of driving change.”



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