The UAE Golden Visa in 2023
Published: 14 August 2023
Since 1980, the population in the UAE has increased by 164% from 1.01 million to 10.17 million in 2023.
The huge increase is largely driven by expats. According to the latest statistics, expats make up a staggering 88.5% of the total population of the UAE in 2023.
The UAE Golden Visa is the gateway for those looking to establish long-term residence in popular locations across the region, including Dubai and Abu Dhabi.
The programme has seen substantial changes in recent years, making it more accessible than ever.
In this article, we look at everything you need to know about the UAE Golden Visa programme in 2023, including the benefits, recent changes and requirements.
What is the UAE Golden Visa?
The UAE Golden Visa is sometimes known as the Dubai Golden Visa.
It is a long-term residence visa aimed at talented individuals and investors. It grants foreign nationals and their families the right to live, work and study in the UAE1
The scheme was launched by the government in 2019. However, the programme has undergone substantial changes in recent years, making it more accessible and straightforward.
What changes have been made to the UAE Golden Visa in 2023?
In late 2022, the government approved major changes to the programme. Below are some of the key changes in detail.
Reduced investment amount:
Previously, the minimum investment requirement for a golden residence visa in the UAE was AED 10 million. This has now been reduced to AED 2 million for real estate investments.
The new changes allow investors to finance up to 50% of their real estate purchase with a mortgage, as long as the loan is from a UAE bank.
Real estate investors can now obtain a UAE Golden Visa through off-plan property purchases. This allows investors to take advantage of new developments in high rental yield locations such as Dubai.
Grace period extension:
Previously, UAE Golden Visa holders had a 30-day grace period to renew their visa after it had expired. This has now been increased to six months.
Golden Visa renewal extension:
The UAE Golden Visa is now valid for 10 years for all categories.
Under the new rules, the primary holder of the Golden Visa can sponsor their family members for a 10-year residency without paying additional deposits. This includes their spouse and children of any age.
UAE Golden Visa benefits
As well as offering long-term residency, the UAE investor visa provides several tax benefits.
UAE residents benefit from a favourable tax system. This includes no capital gains, inheritance or income tax and very little corporate tax to pay. By optimising their tax situation, Golden Visa holders can maximise their wealth potential.
There is also no need to live in the country full-time. Unlike other UAE Golden Visas, the investor visa allows applicants to remain outside the UAE for six months without losing their Golden Visa status.
Some of the other UAE Golden Visa benefits include:
- Access to the UAE education system, including schools and universities
- Access to world-class healthcare services
- A long-term renewable residence visa valid for up to 10 years
- The ability to sponsor domestic helpers and family members, including spouses and children of any age
Requirements and eligibility
There are ways to secure a UAE Golden Visa. As stated on the UAE government website, investors can obtain a 10-year residency Golden Visa by making a public investment.
This requires a minimum deposit of AED 10 million to an approved investment fund. However, the most popular and straightforward method to securing a visa is the real estate option.
Real estate investors can obtain a Golden Visa through one of the following options:
- By making a minimum investment of AED 2 Million ($545,000). AED 1 million can be taken as a mortgage, with at least AED 1 million paid to the developer
- By purchasing one or more ready-built or off-plan properties with a combined value of a minimum of AED 2 Million
The following eligibility criteria may also apply depending on the chosen investment route:
- Must be in good health
- Must have a clean criminal record
- Have medical insurance and can provide proof of a sufficient health insurance policy
- Have adequate funds to make the investment
The programme is also open to those with exceptional talents and skilled professionals. This includes:
- Those in the fields of culture and art
- Professionals in the fields of science and engineering
- PhD degree holders
How to apply for the UAE Golden Visa
Changes to the programme have made the Golden Visa application process more streamlined. However, attention to detail is essential.
From gathering the required documents to securing your investment, there is a lot to consider. Legal services are also usually needed to ensure a smooth application process.
To learn more about the UAE Investor Visa, as well as other residency and citizen programmes, visit the Holborn Pass countries page. Here, you will find detailed programme information and downloadable factsheets.
Alternatively, use our comparison tool to compare all schemes and decide which one is right for you.
If you are ready to get started, we can help.
Holborn is an international leader in investor visas. We are a part of the wider Holborn Assets Group, a leading financial services company with a global footprint.
Our experts provide a bespoke, end-to-end service and tailored advice to support your needs and goals.
Contact Holborn Pass today and find out how we can help you.