Entry prohibited for UAE visa holders abroad, visa issuance, flights suspended

20 Mar 20

UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

IMPACT – HIGH

The government has implemented further travel restrictions and other measures to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

Key Points:

  • As of March 19, holders of UAE visas, residence and work permits who are currently abroad are prohibited from entering the country, and this decision renewable every two weeks.
  • Issuance of work permits, tourist visas and visas on arrival are suspended until further notice.
  • Foreign nationals currently in the UAE and whose visa/permit application is in mid-process (i.e., initially approved) may see some delays in completing their medical exam and biometrics at this time.
  • UAE citizens are prohibited from traveling abroad, but along with other GCC nationals are permitted to enter the UAE.
  • Flights to and from the following countries are suspended until further notice: Bahrain, China (except Beijing), Egypt, Iraq, Iran, Italy, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Syria and Turkey.

Additional information: Although the entry ban is initially in force for two weeks, employers and foreign national employees should anticipate that it may be extended. Those affected by the entry ban should contact their employer in the UAE, as well as the relevant UAE diplomatic mission. Families of those affected by the entry ban are urged to contact the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship Operation@ica.gov.ae.

Analysis & Comments: Employers should anticipate that the entry ban and suspension of visa/permit issuance will significantly disrupt business activity and employee mobility. The response to the COVID-19 pandemic continues to develop, and Deloitte will provide additional updates as information becomes available.

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