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Visa ban on expats begins

posted on 21/06/2003: 1001 views

All the Naturalisation and Residency departments (NRDs) in the country last week began implementing the six-month ban on all categories of expatriates seeking to change their jobs and transfer their sponsorships, according to Interior Ministry officials. A top official of the Sharjah Residency and Naturalisation Department said the majority will have to leave according to the Cabinet's decision which said that expatriates of all categories should leave the country for six months. They should re-enter the country with a new visa and a new labour permit.

He said only those who hold masters or doctorate degrees are exempted from the ban. Officials of the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs and the NRDs are informing expatriates who wish to transfer their sponsorship about the new procedures so that they make their plans in advance.

However, the Dubai Naturalisation and Residency Department (DNRD) said this month that the six-month ban will not be imposed on those whose skills are needed. Colonel Saeed Matter bin Bleilah, Director-General of the DNRD, said the department has been applying the six-month ban in only a few cases under the instructions of General Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and UAE Minister of Defence.

He said the ban will be implemented in a very limited number of cases but the employees allowed to transfer their sponsorship must hold high education degrees. The department in its turn will decide on expatriates cancelling their visas on a case-to-case basis. He said the department is trying to control the labour market. (The Gulf News)


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