Dubai has introduced five-year multi-entry visas for employees of international companies based in the emirate in a drive to improve flexibility and efficiency and attract top talent.
The move was announced by Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed, Crown Prince of Dubai, on Tuesday.
The visa aims to further simplify application procedures, provide ease-of-access to the city and extend the duration of stay of international visitors.
“The five-year multi-entry visa is especially beneficial to employees of foreign-owned firms as it enables them to participate in events, conferences, training courses, exhibitions and similar activities hosted in Dubai by these companies,” Dubai Media Office reported.
Sheikh Hamdan said the policy was part of efforts to make Dubai the “best city to work and live in the world".
“In Dubai, we have started issuing a five-year entry permit for employees of international companies located in the emirate,” Sheikh Hamdan said on Twitter.
“Our goal is to facilitate institutions and enable their teams to move quickly and easily to and from Dubai to participate in meetings, conferences and exhibitions held throughout the year.
“Continuous development of the frameworks regulating the work environment, raising the efficiency of the infrastructure, enhancing the factors of attraction, flexibility and speed in decision-making are factors that confirm Dubai’s position as the best city to work and live in the world.”
The new visa has been introduced by the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs in partnership with Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism.
It allows employees of multinational companies to visit and stay in the UAE for 90 days, with the option of extending this period for another 90 days.
Sheikh Hamdan said the emirate was striving to “meet the needs of its society and anticipates them with measures that help its various components of institutions and individuals to succeed and excel".
“The new five-year multi-entry visa is the latest in a series of initiatives launched by Dubai to create new opportunities for professionals and talented individuals across the world to grow and thrive,” Sheikh Hamdan said.
“The city has been steadily rising in status among the world’s biggest metropolises as a hub for travel, business, investment and talent, offering visitors an experience that is not only productive for work and business, but also enriching in terms of lifestyle and culture.
“Dubai seeks to dynamically adapt to evolving global conditions, embrace change and develop innovative initiatives to deliver future growth and offer new avenues for development and transformation, while remaining one of the world’s safest and most secure cities.”
Dubai embraces new working strategies
The initiative is in line with Dubai's vision to invest in the best local and international expertise to boost the economy and accelerate its development.
In October last year, Dubai introduced a remote-working programme to allow professionals to live in the emirate while employed by companies overseas.
The initiative aimed to encourage people employed around the world to relocate to Dubai.
Through the programme, applicants can obtain all services available to permanent residents in Dubai, including phone and internet services, utilities and schooling. They will also benefit from the tax-free salaries enjoyed by UAE residents.
The Covid-19 pandemic, meanwhile, has prompted many companies across Dubai and the rest of the Emirates to embrace hybrid working models, in a shift away from the rigid “9 to 5" office working model.