Long-term residence visas in the UAE extended to high-earning expats.
Priya Wadhwa
10x Industry

Long-term residence visas in the UAE extended to high-earning expats.

Earn more than AED 30K a month? You can now get a 10-year visa.

Sustainable economic growth has been one of the UAE’s priorities as it works on diversifying away from oil. So far, the UAE has launched:

1. 5-year residency visas to entrepreneurs, earlier in May 2019, which received over 6000 applications within just the first week.

2. Gold Card for permanent residents, at the end of May 2019, which was offered to 6,800 residents that collectively invested Dh100 billion in the country. Out of these, 400 cards have already been issued, and the rest will be issued by the end of the year.

The latest move in this success is the extension of the gold card scheme to high-earning expat executives in the country. The long-term residency scheme can be obtained if expats earn a monthly salary of more than AED 30,000 and meet other eligibility requirements.

In an unprecedented move of inclusion, the permanent residency scheme will provide high-earning executives in the UAE with a 10-year residency permit.

UAE Expats earn nearly AED 570,000 ($155,180) on average, the sixth highest in the world.
HSBC's Expat Explorer study 2018

Given that an average UAE Expat earns AED 47,500 per month, according to HSBC's Expat Explorer study 2018, this opens up eligibility to a large bracket of the UAE expat population, provided they meet the other eligibility criteria as well.

There are two more conditions for high-earning expats to be eligible for this scheme, which are to hold a bachelor’s degree and have no less than five years of work experience, according to the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship seen by Bloomberg.

The 10-year visa would increase the propensity for expatriates to save and invest in the UAE given the outlook for longer-term residency, and we would expect strong demand for the visas.
Monica Malik, chief economist at Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank.

As said by Malik, this offer is being made under the existing “Golden Card” programme announced over a month ago. This scheme was capped at 6,800 investors in 2019. Multiple news outlets reported that the 6,800 eligible investors have already been identified, who have invested an estimated AED 100 billion in total. They will receive this Gold Cards by the end of the year, 400 of which have already been issued.

Having said that, if you’re earning more than AED 30,000 per month and are eligible on all accounts to receive this new 10-year visa, then, by all means, you can start applying.