The UAE’s Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship (ICA) has announced that it has resumed issuing entry permits into the country, starting Thursday, September 24.
However, work permits will still not be issued at this stage.
“The resumption of this service is within the framework of easing restrictions and strengthening the state’s efforts towards supporting recovery plans of the country’s tourism sector and economy,” read a statement carried by news agency WAM.
The ICA added that that the decision was taken following necessary precautionary measures undertaken by the travel industry to reduce the spread of Covid-19.
The decision to suspend the issuance of visas was put in place in March, with the exception of diplomatic passport holders, as part of the country’s efforts to combat the spread of the virus.
While Dubai was the only emirate that issued tourist visas following the Covid-19 restrictions on travel, now all the other emirates too will issue tourist visas.
In a related announcement made on Wednesday, officials in Sharjah said that all visitors to the emirate must have a negative Covid-19 test report, conducted not more than 96 hours earlier, before arriving at the emirate’s ports.
They will have to undergo another test for the virus once they arrive, regardless of the earlier negative report.
Expats residing in Sharjah who have a resident visa issued from the emirate are now allowed to return without the need to obtain prior approvals.
However, residents must present a negative Covid-19 PCR test result, taken not more than 96 hours before the date of travel.
They will have to undergo another PCR test upon arrival. If tested positive, expenses will have to be borne by the resident or his/her sponsor.
Meanwhile in Abu Dhabi, UAE residents returning to the capital emirate onboard Etihad Airways flights must self-isolate at home for 14 days.
To monitor this quarantine, the passengers will be issued medically approved wristbands. The wristband will be provided by the authorities at Abu Dhabi Airport after the travellers clear immigration.
Sources: Gulf Business, Pixabay.