How Skilled Workers, Freelancers and Investors Can Apply for UAE Green Visa

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Entrepreneurs, executives, engineers, professionals and technicians in the scientific, technical and human fields will be among the Emirati workers who will be able to apply for the five-year green visa from September 5.

Green visas will be available to bachelor’s degree holders who earn Dh15,000 ($4,084) or more per month as part of sweeping changes aimed at attracting new talent to the UAE and encouraging residents to stay longer.

The visa offers five-year residency without the need for an employer or sponsor and allows holders to bring first-degree relatives into the country for the duration of their stay.

Investors and business partners of a commercial enterprise, the self-employed and highly skilled workers are eligible for the green visa.

The green visa has been approved by the Cabinet of the United Arab Emirates, in accordance with decision No. 65 for 2022.

People outside the country who wish to apply for a green visa can apply for a 60-day entry work permit to come to the UAE and complete the application upon arrival.

Who can apply for the green visa?

The authorities of the United Arab Emirates have identified three categories of people who can apply for a green visa.

Commercial Licensed Investors/Business Partners, Freelancers/Freelancers and Highly Skilled Workers.

The costs associated with applying for a green visa for any of the three categories have not yet been defined.

Green visa for skilled workers

The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratization (MoHRE) has nine qualification levels of jobs, in accordance with the International Standard Classification of Occupations.

If applying under the Skilled Worker category, the candidate must be ranked at the first, second or third level.

The worker must have a valid employment contract in the UAE with a salary of 15,000 Dh and a bachelor’s degree in certain qualified fields, including science, law, education, culture and social sciences.

Green visa for investors and business partners

The green visa for investors is granted to those who establish or participate in commercial activities. It replaces the previous residence which was valid for two years.

The Federal Authority for Identity, Citizenship, Customs and Port Security may grant the green visa after receiving investment approval from the relevant local authority and proof of investment from the investor or of the businessman.

If the investor has more than one license, the total invested capital will be calculated.

Green visa for freelancers/independents

Freelancers or freelancers can get a five-year work permit without a sponsor or contract, even if the person is overseas.

To be eligible, the freelancer must have at least a bachelor’s degree and provide his annual income for the past two years for an amount of at least 360,000 Dh or prove his solvency for the duration of five years.

They must also have an independent work permit issued by the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation.

Can the green visa holder sponsor people?

The green visa holder can sponsor the residence of first-degree relatives for five years.

The duration of stay of first degree relatives (spouse, sons, daughters and parents) will be the same as that of the green visa holder.

Previously, this was usually allowed for two or three years.

Dependents are granted a grace period of 30 days from the date of expiry or cancellation of their visa to obtain a new residence permit. If the green visa holder does not renew or cancel the visa of their dependents, they could be subject to an overstay fine.

Exceeding fines

As per the UAE immigration fine system, the penalty for staying after the grace period has expired is Dh125 for the first day and Dh25 for each subsequent day.

If the dependent’s overstay period is more than six months, the fine will be 50 Dh per day and 100 Dh per day after one year of overstay.

The green visa may become invalid if the holder stays outside the UAE for more than 180 days.

Updated: August 30, 2022, 04:00

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