December 2, 2021

The UAE Introduces Special 5-year Tourist Visa Permitting Some Business Activities

At present, business visitors can obtain a pre-arranged visit visa valid from 14 – 90 days subject to the host country’s UAE jurisdiction. Individuals who are visa exempt can conduct certain business activities for up to 90 days, or 30 days for those that are eligible for a visa-on-arrival.

Going forward, foreign nationals who work for qualifying international companies with authorization from the Dubai government, may obtain the special 5-year visit visa and enter the UAE to perform business activities from Dubai. It will not be permitted for these activities to be performed in any other Emirate than Dubai and while it is expected the permitted business activities will go beyond what is currently permissible with the standard visit visa, further clarification is pending from the authorities in this regard.

Foreign nationals holding a 5-year visit visa issued outside of this new special visa program may be sanctioned if found to be performing business activities. The visa permits the holder to a maximum stay of 90 days per year with the option of a one off in-country extension for a similar time period.

Qualifying international businesses will benefit from being able to bring their foreign employees to Dubai to perform short term business activities, enabling them to strengthen their local teams and giving new businesses the time to explore the local market while establishing themselves.

For further information on immigration in the UAE, please contact the Sterling Lexicon immigration team.

Leanne Cottrell

Leanne Cottrell

As Head of Immigration with Sterling Lexicon, Leanne leads a team of specialists who are responsible for ensuring the entire immigration process is smooth and stress-free for clients, assignees and their accompanying family members. She brings over fifteen years of experience in strategic immigration management, planning and consultation to her role, and has cultivated invaluable knowledge and experience in processing countless global migration applications. As a trusted partner, she consults with clients on everything from policy considerations and cost or efficiency improvements, to the impact of opening offices in new locations. Leanne is a frequent presenter and author on global immigration topics and trends, and currently serves as a member of the Worldwide ERC (WERC) Immigration Advisory Council.

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