Recent labour and immigration changes in Dubai

By Helen Martin, Head of Operations.

Helen Martin


Dubai can be a great place for those who love to work, offering numerous opportunities for the young. Opening a business in any of the emirates has so many benefits, but you also have to keep abreast of changing rules within the Government departments with no or very little literature.

I hear on a daily basis “this wouldn’t happen in my country”, and while this may be the case, we have to remember that Dubai is a fast-growing market. It is dynamic and regulatory changes are necessary as the emirate progresses.

Recently there have been some changes in the Labour & Immigration department which I have listed below. Some of these changes happened overnight, or at least it seemed that way, with little warning or documentation. This really makes the case for working with a trusted company formation partner that has their finger on the pulse and keep up with such changes.

  • The fee to register a company immigration card has now increased to include a fee of AED 4,060/- for registering the company to have online access to the DNRD system, whereby they can now receive the employment visa electronically and also process status change online


  •  The Labour Contract attestation fee of AED 120/- is no longer applicable


  • Tourist / Visit visas will be issued for Algerians / Tunisians / Moroccans. These type of visas can only be applied for if the applicant is 40 years or above


  • Persons from countries such as India and Philippines who hold a GCC visa will no longer receive a stamp on arrival into the UAE. Previously non-European passport holders with a GCC visa were able to get a 30-day stamp on arrival. European passport holders will get a stamp on arrival as normal


  • If a person is on a European passport but their place of birth stated on the passport is an Arab Country and that person also has a Muslim name, they are now required to provide additional documents such as Birth Certificate, ID for the Country and father’s passport copy


  • The requirement for a person to stay outside the country for 30 days before applying for another Tourist / Transit / Visit visa is no longer applicable


  • A Tourist visa can no longer be extended for an additional 30 days


Article by Links Group on Aug 9th 2015