By Nissar Hoath, Staff Reporter
Published: 16/8/2005, 08:11 (UAE)
Abu Dhabi: The Ministry of Interior yesterday clarified that the recent amendment by the Cabinet of an earlier decision on the visa and fee structure pertains only to a new visa introduced to facilitate the Labour Ministry's Temporary Work Permit. Lieutenant Colonel Rashid Al Khidhar, Legal Adviser at the Directorate of Naturalisation and Residence in the ministry, told Gulf News it is a completely new type of visa introduced to facilitate Labour Ministry's Temporary Work Permit, which is issued for a maximum of 180 days.
The permit by the Labour Ministry is issued for three months for a fee of Dh1,100 per person and can be renewed for another three months with an additional fee of Dh1,100.
"The new temporary work visa, which is called Mission Visa, will be issued to those who enter the country for temporary jobs with permission of Labour Ministry, and with specialised qualification," the legal adviser clarified.The new visa is issued for three months against a fee of Dh600 and can be renewed for another three months against an additional fee of Dh1,200.
It caters mainly to companies that require highly-skilled workers, especially in the oil sector, according to Brigadier Colonel Bekheit Al Suwaidi, Deputy Director at the General Directorate of Naturalisation and Residency, at the Ministry of Interior. He said companies will have to apply for it to the Ministry of Labour which may decide to issue the visas based on the skills needed and the size of the project.Earlier, companies used to bring in temporary workers and specialists on visit visas which is illegal, Brig Colonel Al Suwaidi said.
The new Mission Visa makes it easier for them to hire temporary workers without breaking the law. Al Suwaidi urged national companies to make use of the new system.Earlier, confusion pertained due to media reports saying that under the decision the fee and stay duration structures of the current three-month visit visa have been changed. However, it has not.
A visit visa is still issued for two months against a fee of Dh100 and can be renewed for another 30 days against an additional fee of Dh500.
Al Khidhar further explained: "All the existing visa types, including the visit visa, their fees and stay duration structures remain unchanged."He also clarified that the Mission Visa is not an expansion of the current Special Mission Entry Visa, which is issued to businessmen and tourists for a non-renewable 14 days against a fee of Dh220.
About the implementation of the Mission Visa, Al Khidhar said: "All the procedures have been finalised and it will be implemented by the end of this month."The introduction of the Mission Visa comes under Cabinet decision No 16 for 2005, which amends some provisions of decision No 6 of 1994 regarding the amendment and introduction of fees levied for transactions processed by the departments of Naturalisation and Residency and Traffic. It was approved last month.
The official also clarified that the citizens of 34 countries, including Britain and the US, are issued a 30-day visa upon arrival free of charge. Earlier, the service was provided to the citizens of Britain only.It entitles the holder to stay in the country for up to 60 days as it can be renewed once for an additional period of 30 days for a fee of Dh500.
Types of visaVisit visa: It must be sponsored by an individual, such as a relative, or an establishment. The application is submitted by the sponsor with all required documents. It is issued for Dh100 for two months and is renewable for another month for a fee of Dh500.
The citizens of following countries can get a 30-day visit visa free of charge upon arrival, entitling them to stay for 60 days and the visa can be renewed once for another 30 days for an additional fee of Dh500: Britain, France, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Austria, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Portugal, Ireland, Greece, Cyprus, Finland, Malta, Spain, Monaco, Vatican, Iceland, Andorra, San Marino, Liechtenstein, United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Brunei, Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong.
Tourist Visa: It is available for tourists sponsored by tour operating companies and hotels. It is issued for 30 days for a fee of Dh100 and an additional Dh10 for delivery. This is non-renewable.Special Mission Entry Visa: This is issued for a non-renewable 14 days for a fee of Dh220 and a delivery charge of Dh10. Commonly known as a transit visa, it is collected by the visitor upon arrival.
It is issued to businessmen and tourists sponsored by a company or commercial establishment or a hotel licensed to operate in the UAE.
Mission Visa: The newly added type of visa, it is issued for the purpose of temporary work in the country. It is issued for a maximum of 180 days with a combined fee of Dh1,800. It is issued for three months against a fee of Dh600 and can be renewed for another three months against a fee of Dh1,200.
It has been introduced to facilitate Labour Ministry's Temporary Work Permit. An applicant must obtain the permit from the Labour Ministry first to get the visa.
Transit Visa: It is issued to travellers transiting through UAE airports. It issued for 96 hours and must be sponsored by an airline operating in the UAE. The visitor must have a valid ticket for onward flight. There is no charge for this permit.
Multiple Entry Visa: It is an option for businessmen who are frequent visitors to the UAE and who have a relationship with a reputable company here.
This multiple visa is valid for six months from the date of issue and costs Dh1,000. However, each visit must not exceed 30 days. The visitor must enter the UAE on a visit visa and obtain the multiple entry visa while he is here.
Residence Visa: A residence visa is required for those who intend to enter the UAE to live indefinitely with a person who is already a resident. It is issued to the immediate kin of a resident for three years for a fee of Dh300.
The residence permit becomes invalid if the resident remains more than six months at a time out of the country.Parents of residents are issued residence visas after special approval with a renewable validity of one year for a fee of Dh100 for each year. A refundable deposit of Dh5,000 has to be paid for each parent.
Investor Visa: It is issued to an expatriate investor in partnership with a local. The foreign investor must hold a minimum stake of Dh70,000 in the share capital.
Like the residence visa, it is issued for three years for a fee of Dh300.
Employment Visa: Employment Visa or Permit is issued by the Immigration Department to a foreign national who wishes to work for a company in the UAE upon the approval of the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs.
It allows the holder to enter the UAE once for a period of 30 days and is valid for two months from the date of issue.
When the employee has entered the country on the basis of the employment visa, the sponsoring company will arrange to complete the formalities of stamping his residence. #