Riyadh: The UAE’s visa amnesty scheme has been extended until December 1, the Federal Authority of Identity and Citizenship announced on Tuesday. The scheme, which was launched on August 1, was earlier scheduled to end on Wednesday, October 31.
It allows foreign residents who overstayed their visas or people who entered the country illegally to modify their status with the government, to either return home or legally extend their stay without fear of fine or imprisonment.
Brig Saeed Al Rashdi, acting director general of Foreign Affairs and Ports at Federal Authority for Identification and Citizenship, said the decision to extend the deadline is part of the UAE leadership’s directives to give people living without legal status in the country a new lease on life.
There was some delay in processing applications at the start of the amnesty period due to some technical issues,” Al Rashdi said. “Extending the deadline also helps counteract the effect of the delay some amnesty seekers may have faced.”
Some embassies and consulates from a few countries were unable to issue or process documents in a timely fashion, causing further delays, according to the official.
He urged consulates and embassies to fully cooperate and push for greater efficiency in processing the documents for their citizens in time.
Those who hope to leave the country will be exempt of all fines, regardless of their value, and will not be issued a deprivation stamp. Those wishing to stay can change their status for a nominal fee.