Investment Visa in Dubai: How to Get One and What to Expect

Investment Visa in Dubai: How to Get One and What to Expect

Dubai is one of the emirates whose government is interested in foreign investments. It develops programmes that enable investors and businessmen to get a resident visa (the equivalent of a resident identity card) which is valid for two to 10 years.

We will tell you here how you can obtain the visa and the benefits of this visa.

Where to Invest to be Eligible for a Resident Visa

The Dubai government is ready to provide golden visas to two categories of investors. 

First of all, investors in state funds or private business who do one of the following:

  • invest AED 2 million or more in UAE-accredited funds. When applying for the visa, the investor will need to provide proof of their investment in the form of a letter from the fund confirming this investment;
  • found a commercial or a manufacturing company in the UAE with an authorised capital of AED 2 million or more. Licences and contracts indicating the amount of the investment will serve as proof for the visa;
  • become the owner or a partner of a business and pay AED 250,000 or more in taxes annually. To get the visa, the investor will need a letter from the Federal Tax Authority confirming the amount of tax paid over the year.

Such a visa is granted to investors for a period of ten years. The visa can also include family members: spouse, unmarried daughters, and unmarried sons under the age of 25. 

The investor’s senior employees (executive directors or consultants) and their families are also eligible for visas. To apply for the visa, the employee needs a letter from their employer confirming the appointment of the employee for a ten-year period.

The second category is a real estate investor who owns the following types of properties:

  • a property located in Dubai costing over AED 2,000,000. If the property costs more, the investor may take out a mortgage from one of the local banks. However, the initial AED 2,000,000 should come from the investor’s funds. Such investors are eligible for a five-year visa that can be renewed;
  • a property located in any emirate, costing over AED 1,000,000;
  • a property located in Dubai costing a minimum of AED 750,000.

The last two subcategories are eligible for a two-year visa that can be renewed. 

A visa issued to real estate investors can also include their family members: spouse, unmarried daughters, and unmarried sons under the age of 25. 

To get this type of visa, you can buy residential flats, hotel rooms, villas and townhouses, offices and warehouses located in freehold zones where foreigners are allowed to buy property. In other areas, foreigners are only allowed to rent property. The investor must own the property for the entire term of the visa.

ORLA (Housearch)

How Real Estate Investor Can Get a Resident Visa 

The resident visa application is filed in Dubai. So before you leave Russia, make sure that you have all the necessary documents:

  1. Foreign passports which will be valid for at least another six months at the time when you apply for a long-term visa;
  2. Notarised copies of your foreign passports affixed with an apostille;
  3. Copies of your diplomas on education and qualification certificates translated into English and affixed with an apostille;
  4. Copies of marriage and birth certificates affixed with an apostille;
  5. Medical insurance for the first three months with cover of at least EUR 50,000.

Russian citizens can visit Dubai and stay there without a visa for up to 90 days. They should use this period to purchase real estate and pass a medical examination at one of the emirate’s clinics. Adults (18 years and older) must have a chest X-ray and take a blood test for HIV, hepatitis and syphilis. The medical certificate is valid for three months.

The documents for a resident visa should be submitted to the Federal Authority for Identity,  Citizenship, Customs & Port Security or the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs. Some of the documents can be submitted online through the websites of the authorities, while the original foreign passports should be submitted to one of Dubai’s State Centres (similar to the Multifunctional Public Service Centres in Russia). You must undergo fingerprint and biometric checks there.

Photo: freepik (Freepik)

The applicant must also pay a fee ranging from AED 2,280 to AED 2,790, depending on the duration of the investor visa.

The visa is issued within one to two months. Then you should get an identification card (Emirates ID) which is similar to a passport, with basic information on the holder, their photo, and fingerprints. Such IDs are issued to all UAE citizens and residents. The fee for the ID depends on the validity period and ranges from AED 500 to AED 1,000.

How Investors in Businesses and UAE Investment Funds Can Obtain a Resident Visa

It can take longer for investors in businesses and UAE investment funds to obtain a resident visa. At the same time, the visas are valid for longer. Until they receive the visa, investors have to rely on sponsored short-term visas. Business partners, employers or relatives can act as sponsors.

In addition to the standard set of documents - foreign passports, medical certificates, education diplomas, documents for family members and receipts confirming the payment of fees - the following will be required:

In the case of commercial investors opening a business in Dubai:

  • financial report of the company for the previous year (prepared by the company’s auditor);
  • the company’s licence and a copy of the list of partners;
  • a copy of the sponsored visa;
  • a bank statement on the company’s account for the past  three months;
  • tax report of the company for the preceding year.

In the case of investors in UAE investment funds:

  • a letter from the bank in Arabic referring to the “term deposit”. The letter should indicate that the deposit will not be cancelled over the next two years;
  • a copy of the sponsored visa;
  • a tenancy agreement.

In the case of the owners and co-owners of a company paying over AED  250,000 in taxes per year:

  • a letter from the Federal Tax Authority;
  • the company’s licence and a copy of the list of partners;
  • a copy of the sponsored visa.

Photo: DCStudio (freepik)

Opportunities for Investment Visa Holders

Dubai residents have access to a number of opportunities which are not available to tourists. Residents may:

  1. Open a bank account;
  2. Become a tax resident. Dubai has a convenient tax system for both individuals and businesses. For example, there is no personal income tax, property tax or inheritance tax;
  3. Enter and exit the UAE without impediment. At the same time, residents are not required to stay permanently in Dubai to maintain their residential status as long as they visit Dubai twice a year;
  4. Obtain Schengen and US visas in the UAE;
  5. Take out loans from Dubai banks;
  6. Use medical services in state clinics.
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In a Nutshell

If you need a Dubai resident visa as soon as possible, consider investing in real estate. A deal can be completed in a matter of several weeks. During this period you can prepare all the necessary documents and submit them to the state centre before the visa-free stay period expires. It makes sense to invest in Dubai’s economy if you already reside and work there and plan to start your own business, stay for longer in the emirate and bring your employees to Dubai.

Cover photo: pxhere

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