Dubai Chamber Fights Back Against New Visa Rules

The Dubai Chamber is currently planning to attempt to overthrow the new residence visa rules, which have reduced expat visas from three years to two years.

The Dubai Chamber, which is currently in talks with counterparts in other emirates, believe that the labor card validity should actually be extended as opposed to shortened. Discussing a meeting that was held between all UAE Chambers last week, Dubai Chamber director general Hamad Buamim told Arabian Business that he believed the ruling was not beneficial to businesses within the emirates: “This wasn’t a law, this was actually a ministerial decision, and I believe that they looked at it from certain perspectives that we as the private sector, we don’t agree with,” he said.

When questioned as to of the Chamber would have the power to overturn the ruling he replied: “All the governments in the UAE listen quite well – HH Sheikh Mohammed [bin Rashid Al Maktoum] said once that even if there is a law that we pass today, if it is wrong, we are ready to relook at it tomorrow.”

“As the private sector, the position is that we are not that happy with this change and we would like to see a change back to the old times.”

The changes in residency visa rules were introduced last December with the intention of regulating the labor market and introducing more flexibility into the relationship between employers and employees. At the time they defended their decision to reduce labour permit validity, stating that they believed it would create “a positive impact on the labor market.”

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