The Government says these and other changes are aimed at simplifying the UAE’s visa regulations and liberalising its labour market, 80% of which is estimated to be comprised of foreign workers living under some type of visa arrangement.
Another goal is to reduce the control employers have over their employees, the government said in statements outlining the changes. For example, a so-called “no objection certificate” has been scrapped. This means that once a job contract has expired or has been legally terminated, the Labour Ministry will enable workers to take up new jobs in the Emirate without the consent of their previous employers – which had been the case until now, according to the ministry’s acting director-general, Humaid Bin Deemas.
"Workers, skilled and unskilled, who end their job contracts legally and complete at least two years of service, will get a labour permit outright," he said.
Previously, these workers had to complete at least three years of service with their previous employers and had to obtain an NOC letter.
Details of the new visa regulations may be found on the Dubai Visa Rules and Procedures website by clicking here. A frequently-asked questions page compiled by the Emirates 24/7 website may be found here.