The General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs in Dubai. People who enter the country on visit, transit and tourism visas are not allowed work with or without salary. Image Credit: Abdel-Krim Kallouche/Gulf News archive

Dubai: While people on visit visa are not allowed to work with or without salary in the UAE, expats who wish to work for a short time or on probation can enter the country on mission visa which is for 90 days, according to a senior official.

People who enter the country on visit, transit and tourism visas cannot work and cannot obtain a work permit here, Humaid Bin Deemas, Acting Director-General of the Ministry of Labour, told Gulf News.

"We do not have labour permit under the category of probationary [employment] and people who enter the country for visit cannot work at all here," he said.

People caught working on visit visas will be deported and banned from entering the UAE forever and employers will be fined Dh50,000 for each such worker, according to him.

He said expatriates on visit visas cannot obtain work permits within the duration of their visas and those who come on visit visa to look for a job must leave the country once they find a job after which visas can be processed as per rules for employment visas. He said people hoping to work here from the date of their arrival must arrange for an employment visa before coming here. "The employment visa allows people to enter the country once and is valid for 30 days, during which the employer should complete the processing of their work permits and residency visas," he said.

Sponsoring company

He said mission visa can be applied for at the Ministry of Labour by the sponsoring company. He said the ministry also issues a temporary work permit which is different from the mission visa.

"Mission visa is valid for entering the country for 60 days and the holder of such visas can stay up to 90 days after entering the UAE. This kind of visa is renewable once for another period of 90 days after which expatriates on mission visas have to leave the country," Bin Deemas said.

People who enter the country on mission visas need to obtain the mission card from Ministry of Labour. He added that people on mission visa can convert it to work permit and continue to work. He said temporary work permit is also issued for those already living in the UAE on residence visas on case-by-case basis.