UAE residence visa holders, who stay outside the Emirates for more than six months, can now apply for a permit to re-enter the country.
They can apply through the Federal Authority for Identity, Citizenship, Customs and Ports Security (ICP) website, by clicking under 'smart services'.
The application must be submitted from outside the country, and residents will need to specify a reason for their 6-month stay along with supporting documents as proof.
The applicant can re-enter the country only after getting an approval email from the ICP, with the approval process taking approximately five days.
Details of re-entry permit:
• When the application is approved, the applicant must enter the country within (30) days starting from the approval date.
• The application will be automatically canceled after (30) days in case the application is returned due to missing data or non-completion of the required documents.
• The application will be canceled if it is returned (3) times due to missing data or non-completion of the required documents.
• Issuance fees are refunded only if the application was rejected by the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship, Customs and Port Security.
• A AED100 will be charged for every (30) days or less spent outside the country.
The new entry permit system is the latest in a string of changes to the visa and residency system implemented recently.
The fees to avail of ICP services, including those to issue visa and Emirates IDs, went up by AED 100 earlier this month.
Visit visas can no longer be extended within the UAE, with holders having to exit the country and come back on a fresh visa.
The ICP also recently standardised the fine on overstaying visas in the country to AED 50. Tourists and visit visa holders who overstay will pay AED50 a day instead of AED100, and those overstaying on a residency visa will have to pay double - AED50 a day instead of AED25.