What is the change? Dubai plans to open 70 additional Amer Business Centers to replace typing centers and centralize visa and residency services. Last year, the centers were introduced with the opening of 15 offices and authorities had originally projected they would only open 50 more.

What does the change mean? Amer Centers provide services for foreign residents, including visa and residency applications, residency renewals, visa cancellations and related applications. As more centers open, foreign residents and visa applicants in Dubai should expect shorter wait times and an improved application process.

  • Implementation time frame: Ongoing.
  • Visas/permits affected: Visa and residency applications, renewals, cancellations and related services in Dubai.
  • Who is affected: Foreign residents and visa applicants in Dubai.
  • Impact on processing time: As more centers open, wait times should improve because of increased resources. The centers are expected to improve overall procedures as they replace typing centers, but they may not directly impact processing times on the whole.

Background: The Amer centers were introduced in November in response to requests from the business community. More centers are expected to open so that eventually anyone seeking visa and residency services in Dubai will have easy access to them. Typing centers have since stopped processing visa-related services.

BAL Analysis: Delays are still possible during the transition period, but Dubai’s plans to increase the eventual number of centers should further improve wait times and the application process in the emirate. Contact BAL if you need assistance in determining where to submit applications.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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