New changes to citizenship laws could grant select foreigners the coveted Emirati citizenship.
The UAE passport — which prior to the pandemic, reigned as the World’s Most Powerful Passport, was also one of the most difficult, or rather impossible, passports to get ahold of as a foreigner.
Although distinct citizenship laws were put in place to restrict the naturalization process to very limited cases, over the past several years, the UAE has adopted a more active role in ensuring the future of the Emirates is rooted in innovation, opportunity, prosperity, and global unity.
With the newly announced citizenship law, select investors, skilled professionals, and notable talents will be granted an Emirati citizenship. And this, while being allowed to keep their current citizenship — which is another significant change to the previous legislation that didn’t allow for dual citizenship.
It is also interesting to note that the UAE is home to nearly 10 million people, with the vast majority being expatriate workers and only 1.4 million accounting for actual Emirati citizens.
A UAE passport and citizenship will offer these candidates a wide range of benefits — including the right to establish or own commercial entities and properties, the freedom of visa free travel, and benefiting from the state’s budget on free education, healthcare, housing loans and grants. 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.
It’s safe to say that although it is finally possible to get your hands on one of the world’s historically most powerful passports, it is also a very selective process that will ensure only the best of the world’s talent and professionals will be selected.
This new law comes in line with the UAE’s mission to celebrate international collaboration and cooperation. With its upcoming Expo 2020 in Dubai, the UAE will welcome 190 participating countries and millions of visitors from across the globe for six months.
And as the world gradually returns to normal following the aftermaths of the pandemic, it is also only a matter of time for the UAE passport to resume in its premier place as the world’s most powerful passport. We saw its inspiring trajectory the first time around as the official monitor of the UAE Passport Power Initiative and we are certain that with its commitment to strengthen diplomatic relations and strive to lead on the global stage — we will see it once again.