The UAE Cabinet approved a range of legislations which will ease residency and investment laws in all of its seven emirates. Announced by HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice President and the Prime Minister of the UAE and Dubai Ruler, the changes of note include allowing 100% foreign ownership of firms within the UAE outside of dedicated Free Zones (previously a local Emirati partner was required to hold majority ownership), five year student visas, 10 year investor visas and 10 year visas for a range of skilled professionals. The legislations are expected to be in effect by the third to fourth quarter of 2018.
Finally in the residential sector, if the resolution grants investors 10 year visas for property investment – currently a two year visa can be applied for if the value of the investment is greater than AED 1m cash – it is likely we will see an increase in demand from residents and foreign investors.
AHID SHAIKH MOHAMMED
Chairman – Deja Vu Real Estate
The sweeping changes will be welcome by not only the estimated 8.6 million foreign residents who reside in the UAE but also by international investors given the UAE’s status as a global and regional hub to access not only GCC countries but also the wider MEASA region. These changes will encourage the movement of high value human capital, including, but not limited to medical, scientific and research professionals, innovators and investors and help the country establish itself as the preferred destination for multinational firms.
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