What the UAE’s New Retirement Visa Means For Residents

The UAE has been among the most popular destinations for expatriates. In fact, according to a recent research by the country’s Congressional Research Service, 90% of its 10 million population is made up of people from within and outside the region. While the majority of them seek to work in the country’s rich and open economy, many of them also would like to retire there, given its foreign-friendly policies.

With the end goal of attracting top talents from around the world, the UAE has even transformed its economy through visa reforms for foreigners to put down roots and create a more agile business model. Among those included in their visa reform program is the improvement of the UAE Retirement Visa.

The UAE Retirement Visa

In September 2018, the UAE Cabinet approved a plan providing retired residents over the age of 55 years a long-term retirement visa for a period of five (5) years, which may be renewed and extended. This law gives resident expatriates over the said age an opportunity to stay in the country even after the completion of their work as a way of giving back to their contributions to the country’s economy. This law was amended in 2021, which then provided for a new criteria.

According to the amended conditions, for one to be eligible for a retirement visa, he or she must fulfill at least one of the three criteria: (1) having one property or more worth 1 million AED; (2) having a bank deposit of no less than 1 million AED; and (3) having an active income of no less than 180,000 AED per annum. 

This law is federal in nature, so it applies to all residents of the seven emirates of the country. 

What It Means for Resident Expatriates

The amended conditions to qualify for a UAE retirement visa requires one to have a stable income. Although according to reports, one may combine the overall value of his or her real and personal properties in order to reach the required value, it is not easy to earn in the country given the cost of living therein.

Despite the fact that there is no mandatory minimum wage for expatriates, recent reports show that the average monthly salary in Dubai alone is about 21,5000 AED. Given that the emirate is among the expensive places to live in the country, it may be challenging for a person to save 180,000 AED or better yet, own a property worth 1 million AED, before his or her retirement. 

With this, for expatriates to earn the required value and qualify for the retirement visa, they must engage in different sources of income, such as high return investments in Dubai and in other emirates. This will allow them to have a source of passive income which they can allocate for their savings, while they work to meet the costs of their day-to-day living expenses.

Investing in the UAE

Being among the freest economies in the world, the country has become one of the global hubs for investment. In 2020 alone, it gained a foreign direct investment amounting to $19.884 billion (73.04 billion AED). Given this stable financial environment, expatriates all over the country have higher chances of returns either in real estate, stock, bond, or mutual fund investments, among others. As many investment groups in the country, like AIX Investment, continue to provide a secure investment portfolio along with the best financial advisors, they will be able to not only save money, but also divert their assets into many other things that matter, including their retirement.

For more information, visit https://www.aixinvestment.com

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