United Arab Emirates is the crown jewel of Middle East, the citizens as well as residents of the country enjoy a high standard of living. There are plethora of opportunities for employment and business which attracts people to invest to the country. But recently due to the Coronavirus outbreak in 2020, the restriction in regard to residents has been tightened, which has led to a number of problems for the existing as well as potential residents. According to the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship (ICA), the main authority in UAE which determines one’s right to enter and reside in the Country, issued a broad notice on March 17, 2020, which specifically abstained from providing Visas to potential residents. Further the current Visa holders were controlled by needing an approval to enter the country mainly in Abu Dhabi, who were outside the country during the time of the outbreak. This lead to increased distress for existing residents, for instance a large number of labourers work in UAE, their respective Visas were limited, thus in effect they lost their means of livelihood in amidst of the pandemic.
Entering Abu Dhabi is a lengthy process. Mainly there are two types of Visas which the UAE provides. The First one is the visit Visas and the other one is Residence Visa. According to the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA), the primary immigration checking authority of UAE, a visit Visa, is generally provided to Tourists or individuals who are visiting the place for tourism, attending Conferences and Family visits. The duration of this particular Visa, is generally 1 month or 3 months, and this can be extended or changed to another Visa for 30 days, 90 days or to residence visa. The article mainly discusses the idea of Residence Visa. This Visa is granted to those individuals who have entered the country, and now they would like to stay in the country for a duration of one, two or three years. The person is required to get his medical examination done. Most importantly, they have to pass the requirements of the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs for gaining residency. In a nutshell, to be resident of the country he/she should have secured a job in the territory of UAE for gaining approval or he/she can be sponsor for his/her family’s residence.
Recently, in mid of 2020, The Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship announced, that it would allow individuals to fly back to UAE, but they will be required to present a Negative PCR report within 72 hours of landing. Secondly, it has initiated the process of re-entry of residents who still holds the Residence Visa, they should get approval from GDRFA or ICA. Upon approval, they can book their Flight.