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New entry permit system implemented in the UAE

31 January 2023

UAE Residency Visa holders who stay abroad for more than six months at a stretch, will not have to seek a permit to re-enter the UAE.

Residents who stay abroad for the duration specified above, will have to submit a proof, specifying the reason for having stayed outside the country.

Agents at the travel agency and typing centre in the UAE confirmed regarding the notification received to this effect.

Residents can now apply for the service on the Federal Authority for Identity, Citizenship, Customs and Ports Security (ICP) website. The service is called ‘Issue Permit for staying outside the UAE over 6 months’, and can be seen as a sub-section under ‘smart services’.

The applicant can re-enter the country only on obtaining an approval email from the ICP, which will take about five days.

To avail the service, applicants should enter the necessary details including that of their sponsors, and their passport, residency-related information. The applicant will have to fill up the mandatory field on the application seeking the reason for residing outside the country for six months or more.

The General Manager of Al Mas Business Service, Abdul Gafoor, confirmed that the new system is now in place. While an in-person system used to be in place before Covid-19, it is now unified, and can be done online.

The General Manager of Deira Travels, T.P. Sudeesh also confirmed having received the notification. There is an approval process that residents need to follow, and this is available on the e-channels of the ICP, hr dsif.

Usually, Residency gets cancelled automatically if its holder stays outside the country for 180 days or more. The Golden Visa holders are an exception to this rule, as they are allowed to stay abroad for unlimited time, and this won’t affect their residency status.

This new entry permit system is the latest in a series of changes to the visa and residency system implemented lately. The fee to avail ICP services, including those to issue Emirates IDs and visa, has been increased by Dh.100 this month.

Visit visas cannot be extended within the UAE, and holders will have to exit the country and come back on a fresh visa. The ICP further standardised the fine on overstaying visas in the country to Dh.50 per day (earlier Dh.100), while those overstaying residency visa will have to pay Dh.50 (earlier Dh.25).

The UAE’s largest entry and residency visa reforms got into effect in October last year.

In October 2022, the UAE’s largest entry and residency visa got effective, covering all aspects of residency, including the Golden Visa scheme, the five-year Green Residency, the multiple-entry five-year tourist visa and job-hunting entry permits.

Robin Vinod

Writer/blogger who writes on topics such as travel, real estate, employment and everyday life on GCC countries.

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