UAE Golden Visa: Long-term Residency Visa for UAE

A UAE Golden Visa offers expats the opportunity to reside in the country for a long period of time. Due to their exceptional status, thousands of UAE citizens have now been granted a golden visa.

Individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the country, work in key industries leading to economic growth, or have highly valuable skills may be granted 10-year residency permits.

A large number of high school students who got high grades recently received golden visas for themselves, their parents, and siblings.

In order to obtain a visa, a different application process must be followed then that for a normal residency permit. 

UAE Golden Visa

2019 marked the introduction of golden visas. It enables foreigners to live, work, study and own businesses on the UAE mainland with no national sponsor required.

Once the visa is due to expire, the recipient is able to renew for another decade as long as they continue to meet the requirements of the visa.

The visas of expatriates need to be renewed every two to three years.

Citizenship of the Emirate isn’t granted from individuals with golden visas, which can only be granted to individuals nominated by the government or royal court in the Emirate.

UAE Golden Visa: Reasons for its Introduction

Golden Visas were introduced with the intent of promoting the UAE as a destination for foreign direct investment and promoting economic development in the region. To recognize the contribution of long-term residents to the development of their country, the visa was introduced.

Golden visas are granted to acknowledge and thank their contributions with ten-year visas with the possibility of renewal.

 A Golden Visa Can Be Obtained by Whom?

Individuals with special skills and talents, scientists in a variety of fields, and students with promising scientific potential can all be granted golden visas.

Frequently, Emiratis or government bodies nominate people for golden visas, but people can also apply online.

A person’s spouse and children can apply for a golden visa if the individual is approved.

Eligibility for a Golden Visa

Citizens of the following categories may apply for an Emirates residency visa for ten years.

Individuals with investments in the public sector 

There are many ways to invest, such as:

  • You must deposit at least Dh10 million in an investment fund within the country
  • Incorporating a company with a capital of at least Dh10m in the UAE
  • Investing in an existing or newly-formed company that has a value of not less than Dh10m
  • Investment in all the areas mentioned of at least Dh10 million provided that the investment in sectors other than real estate constitutes at least 60 percent of the total investment.

In addition to the spouse and children of the holder, the golden visa grants access to an executive director and a single adviser. The program is also open to business partners, subject to their contributing Dh10m each.

People who have specialized talents

Doctors, specialists, scientists, and inventors are among those that fall under this category, as are people who are creative and work in the cultural or artistic fields.

As outlined on the UAE’s government portal, if you hold a Ph.D. or a patent, then you may qualify, but there are other conditions regarding how specialized talents are defined.

Additionally, all applicants must have a valid employment contract in a specialized field of priority in the UAE.

Conditions for specialized talent

Those with specialized talent must meet certain criteria in order to qualify for residency.

Those in culture and arts must also be accredited by the Ministry of Culture and Knowledge Development, while scientists who belong to the Emirates Scientists Council are required to hold Mohammed Bin Rashid Medals for Scientific Excellence.

Aside from these, exceptional talents should be documented by publications in prestigious journals or patents.

At least two of the following conditions must be met by doctors and specialists: 

An award or certificate of appreciation in the field of the applicant’s work, publication of articles or scientific books in distinguished journals in the applicant’s field of work, and a Ph.D. degree from one of the top 500 universities in the world are all required. It is a must that he is a member of a professional association in his field, holds a Ph.D., and has 10 years of professional experience in his field of specialization in areas of priority for the UAE.

What is the Golden Visa Application Process?

On the UAE’s Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship website, interested applicants must register their interest.

Golden services are provided in a special area.

For those who do not yet have a nomination, you should apply through the box titled “Visa – Golden Visa – Nomination Request For Golden Residence – New Request”.

Your personal information, as well as the category you feel you are qualified for, are requested through the online form.

As well as your passport, you’ll require your Unified Identification Number, which is a six-digit number that is automatically assigned when you enter the UAE.

General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs, Dubai’s immigration department, has also established a new team to handle golden visa applications.

The 24-hour service is available online or by telephone under the name “You Are Special”.

What are the Requirements for Graduates?                   

In order to qualify for a Golden Residency, outstanding students must have at least 95 percent in their high school diplomas from public or private schools, and a cumulative GPA of no less than 3.75 in specific scientific disciplines.

Families of students are included in the visa.

Emirates Schools Establishment is responsible for processing applications for Golden Residency.

What is the Duration of the Nomination Process?

Your application will be reviewed within 30 days, and you will be notified via email if you have been nominated.

As soon as your nomination has been approved, the required documents will be emailed to you to upload.

The Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship will verify your documents within weeks after you upload them and you will receive your visa.

A temporary one-month visa will be issued to you if you are currently residing within the UAE. During this period, you will be allowed to convert your temporary visa into a residency permit.

Learn More About Residency and the UAE Golden Visa 

As a consequence of this announcement, many expats living in Dubai and Abu Dhabi were delighted to hear that the United Arab Emirates (UAE) would grant long-term residence permits to highly valued foreigners. Investors, entrepreneurs, the very best students, scholars, and researchers can apply for these permits, which are valid for 5 or 10 years.

Talent retention and economic growth were the objectives of the initiative. The UAE has also announced that foreigners will have the right to 100% ownership of businesses from 2019. Prior to that, foreigners had to partner with a UAE national to retain 100% ownership or locate their companies in a UAE-free zone.

With high net-worth individuals (HNWIs) moving here from the Middle East and India, residence by investment (RBI) programs are expected to have a lot of success here. The property owners and investors in the Free Zone business previously applied for annual permits or two-year permits that had to be renewed, leaving them in a highly uncertain situation.

As of now, property owners and business investors alike can obtain 10-year permits with their investment, as long as both hold the investment for a minimum of 3 years. One executive director, one advisor, a spouse, and children are all eligible for the 10-year investor residency permit.

Except for Arabs from the other emirates of the Arab peninsula, the process of naturalization takes at least 20 years. Foreigners are not naturalized by the UAE in large numbers, but other Arabs can qualify after 7 years. It is currently possible to travel to the European Union visa-free with a UAE passport.

Does the UAE Offer Citizenship through Investment?

Citizenship by investment is not yet available in the UAE; however, there is an announcement that it will be offered in 2020. For many applicants, it may be attractive to renounce their current citizenship. Applicants must also speak Arabic and must renounce their current citizenship. Due to these factors, many investors may be more suitable for some of the citizenship by investment programs currently available from the Caribbean, Europe, and the South Pacific.

Can I work in the UAE with my Golden Visa?

If you wish to work in the UAE, you need a valid work permit, work contract, or license.

UAE’s Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratization, however, now issues work permits to residents with golden residency.

In order to work for a specific employer, or if they plan to start a new job with a new employer, these documents are required by those who were unemployed when they received their golden visas.

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