The amendment to the law also includes the option to hold dual citizenship.
On Saturday, 30th January, 2021, UAE has announced major changes to the citizenship law, to allow for the naturalization of foreign investors, doctors, scientists, artists and talented people and their families.
The decision to give people with exceptional talents and their families Emirati citizenship aims to embrace them as members of the UAE society, ensure the social stability of these people in the country and boost the overall national development process.
The law detailed the terms and conditions upon which the citizenship can be granted:
Investors: Must own a property in the UAE. Must have had at least one patent certified by the UAE Ministry of Economy or any accredited relevant international body, which has a real value to the UAE economy, in addition to a recommendation letter from the UAE Ministry of Economy.
Medical doctors and skilled professionals: Must be specialized in a unique scientific field that is needed by the UAE, have contributed to studies and research that have scientific value in their field, have 10 years of experience in that field in addition to a membership in a prestigious professional organization in his field.
Scientists: Must be an active researcher in their field at a university, a research institute, or the private sector, have 10 years of experience in that field, have scientific contributions- such as having won a prestigious scientific award, or having secured significant funding for their research for 10 years, in addition to a recommendation letter from a credited scientific institute in the UAE.
Intellectuals and artists: Must be pioneers in culture, arts and other talents with at least one international award in those talents in addition to a recommendation letter from the UAE relevant bodies.
The new law specified the citizenship process, saying that those qualified for the citizenship would be nominated through the Emirates’ rulers court, the courts of the crown princes, the executive council in an emirate or the cabinet.
Saturday’s decision, the first major change to the UAE nationality law No.17 of 1972 on Nationality and Passports, represents a milestone in the Arab world, which usually restrict the naturalization process to a very limited cases and mostly bans dual citizenship. The UAE has taken several steps recently to ensure the social stability of those with long time residency in the country and those who contribute to the wellbeing and development of the society through the introduction in 2019 of the permanent residency scheme, which allowed for granting 5 and 10 year ‘Golden Visas’ to certain categories of residents. Thousands of people have been given the Gold Visa in the past two years, including investors, medical professionals, engineers, scientists and specialized talents.
The new changes put the UAE on par with many developed nations that appreciate the talents of expatriates by awarding them the citizenship, ensuring in the process their social stability and secure a future for them and their families in the country.
*Source: Gulf News