The United Arab Emirates (read Dubai) has updated its visa policy. Looking at it, it looks enticing but it is actually a very poor policy for professionals. Why do you need a ten year visa in a place you are working and living permanently? Essentially, there is NO path to citizenship within those first ten years – and I think that is a VERY big problem for people that may be considering it.
The United Arab Emirates will extend its “golden” visa system – which grants 10-year residency in the Gulf state – to certain professionals, specialised degree-holders and others, the UAE’s vice president said on Sunday.
Foreigners in the UAE usually have renewable visas valid for only a few years tied to employment. The government in the past couple of years has made its visa policy more flexible, offering longer residencies for certain types of investors, students and professionals.
All holders of doctorate degrees, medical doctors and also computer, electronics, programming, electrical and biotechnology engineers are eligible, UAE Vice President and the ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum said in a statement.
Also eligible are those with specialised degrees in artificial intelligence, big data and epidemiology, as well as high school students living in the UAE who rank top in the country and students from certain universities with a GPA of 3.8 or higher.
After first announcing a long-term visa plan in 2018, the UAE in 2019 started granting 5- and 10-year renewable visas to certain foreign investors, entrepreneurs, chief executives, scientists and outstanding students.
Do not immigrate to countries where you would work for ten years, and still need to be on a visa. It is a very bad call because what that means is that by the time you cannot work, upon retirement, the system will not pay you since most benefits are reserved for citizens.
Canada and the United States remain the gold standards: they give you a path to citizenship as a permanent resident, and that is a huge benefit.
More so, as I have noted here: PhD is a career insurance. Increasingly around the world, they cannot have enough of them especially those in the technical areas. I do not see how it could hurt anyone who chooses to get one! Even Dubai likes to keep PhDs. But do not fall for their visa policy if you have other options – there is nothing golden in it.
Yes, it is pure exploitation of young people who are increasingly looking for greener pastures. If you must leave Africa, consider Canada and the United States; their immigration & citizenship policies are better.
The UAE must include a path to citizenship for people who come into the nation to live and work. Permanent residency is not just enough.
Today, we approved granting the 10-year Golden Visa to all PhD holders in the UAE. Also, the Golden Visa will be granted to top graduates from UAE-accredited universities with a GPA of 3.8 and above.
— HH Sheikh Mohammed (@HHShkMohd) November 15, 2020
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