United Arab Emirates

The UAE holds a prominent position in the Arabian Gulf, boasting contemporary infrastructure, transportation networks, and communication systems. It is a highly favorable location for conducting business, offering seamless global connectivity. Among its seven emirates, Dubai stands out as the second largest and plays a pivotal role as the UAE’s foremost international hub, serving as a vital financial and commercial center.

Program Overview

The UAE Residence by Investment program enables international individuals to invest in the country and seek a residency permit, commonly referred to as a UAE golden visa.

Program Benefits
Months to Residency from
Min Investment Amount (USD)
Years to Citizenship (from)*
  • A strategic gateway connecting Africa, the Middle East, Asia, and Europe due to its advantageous geographical location.
  • A secure and safe living environment.
  • High-quality services and an excellent standard of living.
  • The option to include the applicant’s spouse and unmarried children of any age at no extra investment cost.
  • Ranked among the top 30 countries globally for ease of doing business.
  • Investor-friendly tax policies, including no personal income, capital, net worth, or withholding taxes (excluding certain sectors like domestic banking and oil) and numerous double-tax treaties.
  • Attractive opportunities for real estate investments.
  • Efficient and simplified residence permit procedures.
  • A member of the United Nations, the Gulf Cooperation Council, and the Arab League.
Program Qualifications
  • The UAE’s Golden Residence visa program offers several beneficiary categories, among which are real estate investors who can secure a 10-year renewable residence visa by meeting one of the following criteria:Acquiring a property valued at a minimum of AED 2 million (approximately USD 550,000).

    Purchasing a property valued at a minimum of AED 2 million (approximately USD 550,000) with financial assistance from specific local banks.

    Investing in one or more off-plan properties valued at a minimum of AED 2 million (approximately USD 550,000) from authorized local real estate companies.

Types of Investments and Fees

It’s important to note that the UAE rarely, if ever, grants citizenship. There is currently a circulating government proposal that may introduce this option, but it would involve a lengthy process, including learning Arabic and relinquishing all other passports.

For now, if you’re interested in citizenship, you should explore other avenues as it’s not a current practice.

Nonetheless, the UAE offers a range of valuable residency programs through investment, including:

  • A 10-year residency for a public investment of at least AED 2 million.
  • A 5-year residency for investing in real estate properties worth at least AED 2 million.
  • A 5-year residency for entrepreneurs establishing an innovative business.
  • A 10-year residency for individuals with outstanding specialized talents.
  • A 5-year residency for outstanding students.


Residence Type Application Fee (AED) Visa Fee (AED) Administrative Fee (AED) Renewal Fee (AED)
Public Investment Visa (10 years) 4,180 3,800 1,200 4,200
Real Estate Investment Visa (5 years) 4,180 3,800 1,200 4,200
Innovative Business Visa (5 years) 4,180 3,800 1,200 4,200
Outstanding Specialized Talents Visa (10 years) 4,180 3,800 1,200 4,200
Outstanding Students Visa (5 years) 4,180 3,800 1,200 4,200


The application fee is a one-time fee and is non-refundable.

The visa fee is payable annually and is non-refundable.

The administrative fee is a one-time fee and is non-refundable.

The renewal fee is payable annually and is non-refundable.

Dependents can be added to your residence for an additional fee.

The UAE residence program is not a citizenship program.

Please note that these fees are subject to change at any time. It is always best to check with the UAE government for the most up-to-date information.


Additional Fees:

Police clearance certificate: 2,000 AED

Medical certificate: 1,000 AED

Translation and notarization fees: Varies depending on the language and number of documents


Is the climate as challenging as its reputation?

Yes, the UAE has a desert climate, making winters warm, but summers are sweltering, especially in July and August. However, January and February offer milder temperatures.

Can I bring my spouse and children?

Certainly, residential visas allow for including a spouse and children.

Do I need a local business partner for investing?

No, since 2019, the UAE allows 100% foreign ownership of companies.

Is the UAE safe for US citizens?

Yes, the UAE is known for its safety and good relations with the US. Obeying local laws is essential to avoid penalties.

Is Sharia law applicable to foreigners in an Islamic state?

The UAE, particularly Abu Dhabi and Dubai, is accommodating to foreigners, and there’s no strict enforcement of Sharia law on expats. However, respecting local customs and laws is vital.

Are Abu Dhabi and Dubai the sole destinations for foreigners?

While other emirates are open to visitors, Dubai usually takes the limelight as the main attraction for expats and tourists.

Make United Arab Emirates your second home 

Visa-Free Countries



10,242,468 (2023 est.)

GDP (per capita)

$74,299 (nominal, 2023 est.)

GDP (purchasing power parity)

$171,471 (2023 est.)


TIME ZONE Gulf Standard Time (UTC+4)

TOTAL AREA 83,600 sq km (32,300 sq mi)

LANGUAGES Arabic (official), English, Hindi, Urdu, Malayalam, Bengali, Tagalog, Farsi

CURRENCY United Arab Emirates dirham (AED)

MAIN INDUSTRY Oil and gas, tourism, financial services, trade

SCHENGEN/ EU Not part of the Schengen Area or the European Union


    • Tax-free income: The UAE has no personal income tax, which means that residents can keep all of their earnings. This is a major draw for expats from around the world.
    • High standard of living: The UAE has a very high standard of living, with world-class infrastructure, healthcare, and education systems. It is also a very safe and secure country, with low crime rates.
    • Diverse population: The UAE is a very diverse country, with people from all over the world living and working together. This makes it a vibrant and exciting place to live, with a wide range of cultural and culinary experiences to offer.

    Compare the different programs in a nutshell and discover their features


    Check the cost estimates for each offered program


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    The materials contained in this page are provided for general information purposes only and are not intended to provide legal or other professional advice. Processing times and costs will vary depending on a number of factors. CitizenMatch is not responsible for any changes to the time and cost estimates; we can provide specific information on an individual basis. All rights reserved.

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