UAE, Russia reach deal on visa-free travel

30 Aug 18

RUSSIAN FEDERATION, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

IMPACT – MEDIUM

What is the change? The United Arab Emirates has waived visa requirements for Russian nationals.

What does the change mean? Russian nationals will be able to travel to the UAE without first obtaining a visa for up to 30 days for business or tourism. Russia is in the process of waiving its visa requirement for UAE nationals.

  • Implementation time frame: Immediate and ongoing.
  • Visas/permits affected: Visa waiver.
  • Who is affected: Russian nationals traveling to the UAE for short-stay business or tourism.
  • Impact on processing times: Travelers covered by the waiver will not need to apply for a visa before travel.
  • Business impact: Business travelers may conduct limited business activities on the visa waiver.

Background: The UAE and Russia inked the agreement in July, when the UAE sent a delegation to meet with Russian officials. Russian nationals may now visit the UAE without first obtaining a visa for up to 30 days, extendable for an additional 30 days while in the UAE.

Russia is moving toward implementing visa-free travel for UAE nationals. A statement posted to the Russian Embassy’s website says the agreement states it will go “into force after 30 days (after the required) internal procedures are accomplished by Russia and UAE, which has not happened yet. The procedures themselves and their timing may vary from one country to another.”

BAL Analysis: The visa waiver will make it easier for Russian nationals to visit the UAE for business or tourism. The UAE has actively pursued visa exemptions, and has recently implemented visa-free travel agreements with Chile, China, Ireland, Switzerland, Uruguay and Ukraine. The number of countries allowing UAE nationals to enter without a visa now exceeds 155.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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