All You Need To Know About UAE’s Golden Card Scheme | UAE Permanent Residency Program

It is a dream of most of the expats to get a permanent residency in the country where they work and sees the long term future there. But, UAE doesn’t offer any permanent residence program and usually give limited duration residence permits(renewable visas) under a sponsorship system to all foreign workers. However, there is good news for people looking for long term residence in the UAE. In this article, we will see what is Gold Card (launched in UAE on 21st May 2019) which offers long term residency program in UAE.

UAE's Golden Card Scheme

What Is a Golden Card?

His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, on Tuesday, 21st May 2019, launched a permanent residency scheme to attract wealthy businessman and exceptional talent individuals. It is an attempt to attract more Indian and other national expat professionals and businessmen to the Gulf nation. This initiative has been taken to generate more foreign investment in the UAE, encourage entrepreneurship, and attract top engineers, scientists, and brilliant students.

He made an announcement that the first group of 6,800 investors coming from more than 70 nations, with investments aggregating to AED 100 billion (USD 27 billion) have been given permanent residency.

The Golden Card offers unprecedented benefits to the cardholders and their families (the spouse and children) while creating an attractive environment for business and growth and to ensure cohesive social ties.

On his Twitter page, Shaikh Mohammad said:

Throughout history, the UAE opened its door to millions of people looking for to pursue their dreams and better their lives. The Golden Card is our way to welcome all those seeking to be a part of the UAE’s success story and making it a second home.

UAE's Golden Card Scheme

Criteria To Get The Golden Card

Category 1:  [Investors] 10 Years Visa

Investors in public investments through a deposit, an established company, business partnership of Dh10 million or more, or a total investment of not less than Dh10 million in all areas mentioned. Also, non-real estate investments should not less than 60 percent of the total investment. If you fall into this category, then you are eligible for this card and 10 years visa.

Category 2:  [Real Estate Investment] – 5 Years Visa

If you have an investment of 5 million dirhams or more in the real estate then you would be eligible to get a visa for the 5 years for you as well as for your spouse and children.

Category 3:  [Entrepreneurs] – 5 Years Visa

If you are an entrepreneur having a project not less than 500000 AED, you fall into this category and can apply for this long term visa for yourself and family.

Category 4:  [Scientists, Researcher, Doctors, Innovators] – 10 Years Visa

If you are a Scientists, Researcher, Doctors or Innovators and having a valid work contract with specialization in fields that the prioritize in UAE then, you are eligible for the 10 years residence visa for yourself, spouse and children.

Category 5:  [Outstanding Students] – 5 Years Visa

If you are a brilliant student and have scored 95% or more in secondary school with a distinction of 3.65 GPA upon graduation from any university, you can apply for 5 years renewable residency visa.

What Are The Key Reasons Behind The Launch Of Golden Card?

  • In 2017 they remitted $45bn (Dh164.3bn) home, the state news agency Wam reports. Most expats have a money-making mindset when they move to the UAE. They have a short-term plan to earn money and go back to their home country. This initiative will definitely help to change their short time mindset and encourage them to see long term goal.
  • The UAE Cabinet’s decision to enforce a Golden Card for permanent residency now allows expats to look at UAE as a home, rather than a temporary plan.
  • The move is likely to attract more of expat businessman as well as exceptionally talented professionals including doctors, engineers, scientists, students, and artists.
  • Many residents have their eye on the short term and channel their money into property or savings schemes abroad.
  • The Golden Card will further the stability of the UAE by encouraging more distinguished professionals to the country.
  • The property market will benefit hugely from this step in strengthening the economy as the investment from the foreign country will rise.


Definitely, it is not for the common expats who are earning their bread and butter. However, this is a great initiative for investors who have been here long term and have invested enough to fit into the criteria or minimum requirement. For me, it seems like a new visa system where the residency visa will be issued for the long term i.e. 5-year or 10 years provided you have sufficient money invested in UAE. It cannot be compared with the permanent residence like other foreign countries have like, Canada, Australia, etc. On the other side, it is a very good opportunity for wealthy investors or businessmen who have been in UAE for a long time or wants to continue their business in UAE for the long term. It could be considered as some sort of security to remain invested in the UAE. Our social activities will only increase when we know we will live here permanently.

What do you feel about this UAE initiative of launching the Golden Card program? Do mention in the comment section on this article.

Leave a Reply