ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates – Foreign nationals, including overseas Filipino workers (OFWs), with valid UAE resident visas, who have been stranded elsewhere due to flight suspensions as a matter of pandemic safety measures, may now return here, according to the Emirates News Agency or WAM.
The new policy directive, which aims to bring back to the country nearly 200,000 people, is good news for thousands of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) who were in the Philippines on vacation or business trips when the flight suspensions were imposed on March 24.
“The return of foreign nationals to the country is part of the UAE’s humanitarian efforts in light of the current crisis. The focus will be on residents – representing 50% of the total of the current phase – to be reunited with their families,” WAM quoted Khalid Abdullah Humaid Belhoul, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MoFAIC) in the media advisory issued June 13.
It also quoted Major General Mansour Ahmed Al Dhaheri, Director General of Identity at the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship (FAIC), as saying that: “This initiative came in implementation of the wise leadership’s directives to enable residents abroad to return to the UAE as part of a gradual return to normalcy.”
Returning individuals are required to register with the “Residents’ Entry Permit” service on the Authority’s website (smartservices.ica.gov.ae.), and all requests will be answered within 48 hours, said the WAM advisory.
Upon receiving approval by email from FAIC, the next step is for them to book a return ticket on the UAE national carriers or other airlines operating flights to the country.
Upon arrival, returning resident visa holders will undergo a COVID-19 test and must self-isolate at home or undergo an institutional quarantine for a period of 14 days. Also, an approved app to track their health status will be used. – Rappler.com
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