Cabinet meeting Sheikh Mohammed
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, chaired Sunday’s cabinet meeting Image Credit: Twitter/@HHShkMohd

Abu Dhabi: The UAE on Sunday approved new visa and residency rules allowing expat students to bring and sponsor their families whenever they have the financial capability.

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, revealed that the council of ministers at Sunday's cabinet meeting approved new changes to the visa and residency rules where expat students will be able to bring and sponsor their families if financial capable.

”The UAE has become a regional educational hub with more than 77 universities and tens of thousands of students annually,” the Vice-President noted .

A student visa of one year is issued to expatriate students who are over 18 years and residing in the UAE and is sponsored by a parent or accredited university. Under the long-term residency scheme or 'gold' visa, outstanding students can apply to get a long-term visa of 5 years.

Other announcements

In the first Cabinet meeting of 2021, the UAE also approved the setting up of the Emirates Tourism Council with a view to coordinate, market and support for national tourism projects. 

“The UAE's winter is the most beautiful in the world has demonstrated the beauty of working as a single national tourism team. Our objective is to support and help our youth benefit from tourism opportunities in all emirates of the country,” Sheikh Mohammed tweeted.

Sheikh Mohammed chaired Sunday’s meeting, held in the presence of Lt. General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior, Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Presidential Affairs and Mohammad bin Abdullah Al Gergawi, Minister of Cabinet Affairs and the Future, as well as other ministers and senior officials.

In a series of tweets, Sheikh Mohammed said: “Today, I chaired the first Cabinet meeting in 2021 in Abu Dhabi, during which we approved the general framework for the UAE’s media strategy... 2020 was a crucial year with the UAE attracting the global interest. This requires different thinking and new interaction to keep pace with this attention.”

“The UAE has been ranked 18th in the world in its soft power indicators and is among the most active countries in international arenas. Our end goal is to better communicate with peoples and convey our story to the world in new formats. We want to develop a new governmental methodology with the new media, which has become influential,” Sheikh Mohammed tweeted.

“We have also approved the Federal Government's Public Debt Strategy. We are looking forward to building a bond market with the local currency and stimulate the financial and banking sector in the country”, the Dubai Ruler added.

The Cabinet also adopted a circular economy policy and formed the Federal Council for the Circular Economy to implement this policy, ensure clean production, sustainable transportation, sustainable consumption, efficient waste management, preserve the environment and generate new economic opportunities.

"At the conclusion of the first meeting, we have reaffirmed our commitment to work continuously. The process of national recovery will never stop. Preserving the public health will remain the top priority before and above anything else. Our society will cross this year with greater strength and energy towards the future,” Sheikh Mohammed further said.