People queue up at a boarding counter at Dubai Airport.
As Dubai continues to drive global travel recovery and growth, the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA) — Dubai in cooperation with Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism (DET) has launched a five-year multi-entry visa for employees of multinational companies, to further accelerate momentum across tourism and all other business sectors.
Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai said: “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. 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.”
Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum.
In line with the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to make Dubai the best city in the world to live, work and visit, the five-year multi-entry visa has been introduced to further simplify visa 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.
OPTION OF EXTENDING STAY
GDRFA-Dubai has now fully activated this visa process and has started issuing it to employees of multinational companies, allowing them to visit and stay in the UAE for 90 days, with the option of extending their stay for another 90 days. The five-year multi-entry visa joins other new categories of visas and programmes launched by Dubai including the Golden Visa for entrepreneurs and property and business investors, as well as the Retire in Dubai and Virtual Working programmes, which provide more flexibility and options for talent looking to work and reside in Dubai. These have led to a significant increase in entry visas issued recently, with visitors looking to take advantage of Dubai’s world-class infrastructure, modern lifestyle, high vaccination rates and commitment to ensuring the highest standards of health and safety for residents and visitors, in line with international practices.
GLOBAL BUSINESS AND TOURISM HUB
Major General Mohammed Ahmed Al Marri, Director General, GDRFA -Dubai, said: “This new step of providing a five-year multi-entry visa for major companies will bolster Dubai’s reputation as a global business and tourism hub. Dubai is committed to simplifying the procedures for issuing entry visas to all nationalities to help realise the vision and directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to make Dubai the preferred destination for international visitors.
“Dubai has always been top-of-mind among international business and leisure travellers and providing these multinational companies the opportunity to obtain five-year multiple entry visas for their employees will contribute towards increasing visitors to Dubai, particularly those who travel in groups, reflecting positively on all economic sectors, including tourism.”
Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General of Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism (DET), said: “This significant initiative is a testament to the strategies inspired by the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to remain agile in the wake of the global pandemic and to drive business growth and lead the recovery of the tourism sector. From a governmental perspective, we have been focusing on initiatives designed to make the city even more attractive to people around the world and easing barriers to entry for business and leisure travellers. By making Dubai more accessible to employees of global corporations, we will be able to increase visitation and attract new talent, and pave the way for the continued and sustainable diversification of our economy.
“Dubai is the preferred destination for multinational companies to host their corporate events and activities, conferences and meetings. All this will have a positive impact across many business sectors and provide an additional incentive for travel to Dubai, building on our unique opportunity to drive growth in this landmark year featuring Expo 2020 Dubai and the UAE Golden Jubilee, and beyond. We look forward to hosting more international corporate events, and we will extend our full support to these companies and their employees through the provision of this five-year multi-entry visa to allow them to enjoy a quick and hassle-free entry process and a memorable stay.
“It is imperative for us to further enhance the partnership and high level of cooperation between the public and private sectors to promote Dubai’s extensive and diverse destination proposition to business and leisure travellers and further strengthen Dubai’s international standing as the safe destination of choice for global travellers.”
The concerted efforts by the tourism authorities, supported by stakeholders and partners, have helped restore momentum in the travel sector; between January and September 2021, Dubai received around 3.85 million international visitors. There are 726 hotel establishments with a total of 123,868 rooms that are open in Dubai, with the overall 61 per cent occupancy being among the highest worldwide.
In September, the World Bank awarded Dubai a certificate for the quality of services that it provides to investors, and described it as a world-class logistics hub. The bank said in a report titled "At Your Service? The Promise of Service-Led Development" that Dubai is one of the most prominent models in the world for service centres, especially for logistics and financial services. Dubai also ranked first regionally and 11th globally among 25 global cities in the "Best Business Cities in Granting Residency Visas to Investors" index maintained by the British company Henley & Partners, which specialises in residency and citizenship advice.
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