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Hind Al Soulia - Riyadh - Visitors will be allowed to enter and leave the country for as long as five years
Jan 6, 2020
January 6, 2020
The UAE has unveiled its first multi-entry five-year tourist visa.
The Cabinet announced the new visa after its first meeting of the year on Monday.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, said the visa would allow tourists multiple entries into the country over five years. It is not clear if there will be a visa application fee.
At present, tourists can visit the UAE with a free multiple entry visa for up to 90 days, from the date of entry.
Sheikh Mohammed said the move aimed to establish the UAE as a "major global tourism destination" and was part of wider plans to prepare the country for the next 50 years of development.
At present, he said the Emirates welcomes about 21 million visitors each year.
"The year 2020 will be different because it is the year of preparation for the next 50, the year in which we design the future of the Emirates," he said on Twitter.
During the meeting, the country's ministers reviewed last year's achievements and approved the new tourist visa. Sheikh Mohammed said the visa would be available to all nationalities.
The move is expected to provide a boost to the tourism industry and make it easier for residents to bring relatives to the country for visits.
Dubai did not hit its target to attract 20 million visitors by 2020, despite a strong performance in boosting the number of Chinese, Omani and Filipino visitors recently. The most recent figures showed it was on course for about 16 million, having hit 12 million in the first nine months, after recording a fall in Indian, British and Russian visitors.
Long-term multi-entry visas would be the latest major change to the visa system.
This includes five-year visas for the brightest graduates and 10-year visas for business owners with significant assets in the country.
More to follow
Updated: January 6, 2020 06:16 PM
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