Abu Dhabi and all other UAE emirates will soon enforce new rules stipulating expatriates seeking to have their residence visas renewed must submit a tenancy contract with the application with the exception of wives, a senior Interior Ministry official was reported on Sunday as saying.
Foreign bachelors must present documents verifying their residence along with their visa renewal application even if they work in one emirate and reside in another, said Major General Nassir al Minhali, the Ministry’s assistant undersecretary for naturalization and residence affairs.
Quoted by the Sharjah-based Arabic language daily Alkhaleej, he said the new rules would be enforced in all UAE emirates “without exception” and are intended only to ensure all expatriates in the country have valid addresses.
He said the decision, which was temporarily suspended last week, does not target property firms or any other party, describing it as a “security, service and administrative” regulation aimed at serving the UAE’s interests.
“All expatriates, including families and individuals, must submit tenancy contracts with their visa renewal applications,” he said.
“As for wives residing in apartments in the name of their husbands, they can present only their marriage contracts with their visa applications.”
Minhali dismissed earlier reports that the new regulations apply only to families, adding that bachelors would not be able to have their visas renewed unless they submit a tenancy contract in their name or a valid utility bill.
“All bachelors are required to submit proof of residence including those whose visas are registered in Abu Dhabi but work in other emirates,” he said.
Alkhaleej quoted what it described as a responsible source at the Dubai residence and foreign affairs department as saying the new rules would soon be enforced in the emirate and that there would be no exceptions of exemptions.
“All foreigners residing in Dubai will have to submit either a tenancy contract of the last water or electricity bill along with their visa renewal and issuance application,” the source said.
The paper also quoted Ali bin Khatim, chief prosecutor at the department, as saying the new decision would “help organise the presence of expatriates in the UAE and reduce negative phenomena including illegal immigration.”