The United Arab Emirates – 19 Update
The main updates in the UAE are related to the travel restrictions, internal measures and economic steps that have been announced in recent days.
As well as a halt to all visa-on-arrival entries, The UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation has extended its suspension on valid resident permit holders who are currently abroad re-entering the country. If you do have questions about what to do there is 24 hour hotline and a “Tawajudi for residents” service that has been created to facilitate safe returns in emergency situations;. As of 19th March 2020 out-of-country visa applications and work permits are currently suspended (with the exception of EXPO 2020 workers, diplomatic passport holders and intra-corporate transfers). In-country visa applications and renewals are still being processed, but there may be delays and additional checks before issues are made. Those concerned about a potential overstay can apply for new visit or tourist visa through any travel and tourism agency without having to go to the border.
The UAE has been extremely active in their methods to slow the spread and contain the coronavirus. As well as the announcements surrounding working from home, the government has taken steps to ensure manufacturing processes will keep residents and medical facilities sufficiently supplied throughout the crisis. Malls, cinemas, pools, beaches, salons, gyms and events have all been closed or cancelled and residents are asked not to group together with more than five people. Restaurants are being allowed to continue with home delivery. 95 of the busiest streets are being sterilized through deep cleaning in order to help stem infection spikes as well. Having closed all the schools, distance and online learning will be initiated from 22nd March 2020, with teachers providing lessons and homework via the internet. Families in need can get internet from Du and Etisalat free of charge and the Ministry of Education is keen to help anyone who may not have the right equipment in order to join in with lessons.