Category Archives: Govt

DCT Abu Dhabi updates Green List – Wed 18th Aug

The Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi) has issued the updated list of “Green List” countries. All travellers arriving from these destinations will be exempt from mandatory quarantine measures after landing in Abu Dhabi. Travellers will be required to present a negative PCR Covid-19 test valid for maximum 72 hours before departure and undergo a PCR test upon arrival at Abu Dhabi International Airport. Vaccinated passengers from the updated Green List will take another PCR test on day 6 (day of arrival counts as day 1). Unvaccinated travellers arriving from these Green List countries will also take a PCR test on days 6 and 9. Countries, regions, and territories included within the “Green List” will be regularly updated based on international developments. Inclusion in the list is subject to strict criteria of health and safety to ensure the well-being of the UAE community. The list also only applies to countries that travellers are arriving from, rather than citizenship. Please note below the updated “Green List” as of 18 August 2021 at 2:00 pm: Albania Australia Bahrain Belgium Brunei Bulgaria Canada China Czech Republic Germany Hong Kong (SAR) Hungary Ireland Malta Mauritius Moldova New Zealand Poland Romania Saudi Arabia Serbia Seychelles Singapore South Korea Sweden Switzerland Taiwan, Province of China Ukraine

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Dubai set to host major business events as Expo 2020 approaches

Dubai’s business events sector continues to build on its momentum as one of the first cities in the world to reopen for international meetings, with a busy calendar of high profile conferences, meetings and incentives on the horizon through the rest of 2021 and into 2022. Following on from the resumption of international tourism to the city in July 2020, Dubai welcomed international business events from October 2020 and immediately saw a healthy pipeline of conferences and exhibitions taking place across the city. With meeting planners recognising Dubai’s ability to safely host events and its prudent handling of the global Covid-19 pandemic, that is now poised to continue in the second half of 2021, through the hosting of Expo 2020 Dubai and into the rest of 2022.   Among the major congresses and conferences coming to Dubai in the coming months are the Congress of the Société Internationale d’Urologie, Society of Petroleum Engineers Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition, International Astronautical Congress, World Chambers Congress, LPG Week, Gastech and Africa Oil Week. Meanwhile, major incentive groups visiting the city will include AFC Life Science, Amway, Sunhope, Jeunesse and OMNILIFE.   Issam Kazim, CEO of Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing, said: “Driven by the leadership of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, the city was among the first in the world to restart its business events sector, providing a vital platform for associations, businesses and organisations to resume their face to face meetings and drive knowledge development in key sectors. We understand the importance for the meetings industry globally to restart physical events, and thanks to …

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National COVID-19 Immunisation Campaign begins in Seychelles

Seychelles, one of the top tourist destinations for GCC travellers, leaps towards immunisation as the country launched its national COVID-19 Immunization Campaign on Sunday, January 10, 2021.Being the first country in Africa to start a COVID-19 national vaccination program, Seychelles aims to be the first country in the world to vaccinate 70% of the over 18 years of age population in order to achieve herd immunity.Leading by example, is the President of the Republic of Seychelles, H E Wavel Ramkalawan, as he takes the SinoPharm COVID-19 Vaccine, making him the first Head of State in Africa to take the first jab. President Ramkalawan also gave special thanks to the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan for the donation of 50,000 doses of the Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccine, which was offered during President Ramkalawan’s visit to Abu Dhabi in December. The President added that this is a testimony of the excellent friendly ties that exists between the two nations that have been further consolidated through continuous support for the mutual benefit of both peoples. “With such a robust vaccination campaign, Seychelles aims to be the first country in the world to vaccinate at least 70% of its over 18 population. From there we will be able to declare Seychelles as being COVID safe,” President Ramkalawan emphasized.  The president added that the UAE Government would also be donating another batch of vaccines to the country soon.President Ramkalawan also thanked the Indian Government for an offer of 100,000 doses of the Oxford Astra-Zeneca vaccine which is due to arrive in the country at the end of January.Speaking of …

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HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed inaugurates track laying for Etihad Rail

His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Ruler’s Representative in Al Dhafra Region inaugurated track-laying works across Al Dhafrah Region in Package A of Stage Two of the UAE’s national railway, during his visit to Etihad Rail’s railhead in Al Ruwais. His Highness was accompanied by H.E. Falah Mohammad Al Ahbabi, Chairman of the Department of Municipalities and Transport and Etihad Rail board member and senior executives from the company. His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan was briefed by Shadi Malak, Chief Executive Officer of Etihad Rail, on construction progress of Package A, which will connect the UAE rail network to Al Ghuwaifat on the Saudi border and the wider GCC region. Having started in early 2020, steady progress has been made on construction of Package A, which is now 59% complete. His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan reiterated that the UAE, under the wise leadership of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, is committed to advanced and integrated infrastructure projects, in particular in the transport sector, which will support the sustainable development of the UAE. His Highness expressed his appreciation for the continuous support of the UAE’s wise leadership for a project that is enhancing the UAE’s status both locally and regionally. With the support of His Highness Sheikh Theyab bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of Abu Dhabi Crown Prince’s Court and Chairman of Etihad Rail, the project has achieved key milestones, with construction progress of Stage Two accelerated, while Etihad Rail’s Stage One continues to overachieve, with 2020 operations out performing 2019’s results.

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RTA educates Abra drivers on best practices of marine transport

Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) held a workshop to educate drivers of Abras operating at Sabkha and Baniyas marine stations about the precautionary measures against the Covid-19 and the best marine transport practices in this regard. Drivers were also briefed on offences to which violators are liable. “This field workshop had taken place at Sabkha and Baniyas marine stations which benefitted about 35 Abra drivers by giving them a practical demonstration of the intended practices. The workshop stressed the importance of taking preventive measures against the coronavirus for the safety of both drivers and riders,” said Saeed Al Balushi, Director of Passengers Transport Activities Monitoring, Public Transport Agency, RTA. “Abra drivers had been briefed on violations such as the use of an expired driving permit, disregard to Abra queuing at the station’s platform, reckless driving, lack of cleaning and maintenance of the interior and body of Abra, disregard to the maximum number of riders, collection of excess fare, overnight staying onboard  the Abra, failure to wear the uniform, poor personal hygiene,  and failure to comply with the safety and security measures in place,” added Al Balushi. “The importance of this workshop is highlighted by the increased public use of Abras during these cooler days tempting more riders, especially tourists and residents, to entertain the pleasures of riding traditional Abras. The Passengers Transport Activities Monitoring Department is keen to make these efforts in the context of realising RTA’s vision: The world leader in seamless & sustainable mobility,” he added.

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Dubai and Emirates extends warm welcome to international visitors

Dubai has reaffirmed its commitment to ensuring the safety and wellbeing of its residents and holidaymakers. Dubai continues to take effective steps under the guidance of the visionary leadership of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, and Ruler of Dubai to build on the strategic initiative to reopen the city to tourists and facilitate travel while maintaining stringent health and safety protocols. In addition, tourist visas for all nationalities will be extended for one month free of charge. Now is the time for holidaymakers to make the most of their trip and experience even more of Dubai. His Excellency Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General, Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism), said, “With 2021 on the horizon, we look forward to continuing to welcome first time and repeat visitors to Dubai, with stringent health protocols and precautionary measures firmly in place.  We are pleased to continue to work closely with our strategic partners Emirates, as well as our hospitality partners, allowing holidaymakers to experience the vibrant energy of Dubai and all our iconic attractions, fantastic culinary and shopping experiences, and exciting festivals and events with added reassurance and flexibility.” Adnan Kazim, Emirates’ Chief Commercial Officer said, “Emirates has worked closely with all Dubai stakeholders to gradually restore our network and signature services, with all bio-safety measures in place. Since Dubai re-opened for international visitors, we’ve been seeing an upward trend in enquiries and bookings which reflects the confidence that travellers have in Dubai and in Emirates. Today, Emirates is flying to nearly 100 cities across the world, providing easy access to Dubai for international travellers and offering a …

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Saudi reopens its land and sea borders with Qatar

Saudi and Qatar reached an agreement to reopen air space and land and sea borders between the two countries. According to the statement on state TV Kuwait’s Foreign Minister Ahmad Al Sabah said the desire for unity and reunification was emphasised during a phone call between Kuwait’s Emir Sheikh Nawaf, Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Based on a proposal by Sheikh Nawaf, it was agreed that the borders between Saudi Arabia and Qatar would be reopened. Nayef Al Hajraf, Secretary General of the GCC, said the agreement to reopen borders between Saudi and Qatar was “a reflection of sincere efforts being made to ensure the success of tomorrow’s summit across all areas, despite the exceptional circumstances created by the pandemic”. “Today’s announcement once again proves that the GCC embodies a deep-rooted partnership that consistently overcomes challenges while advancing the interests of the GCC people thanks to the leadership and wisdom of its leaders,” Al Hajraf said. The UAE’s Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Dr Anwar Gargash, said the summit would be an historic event through which Gulf cohesion would be restored. “We are keen to ensure that the security, stability and prosperity of our countries and peoples are the first priority,” Dr Gargash said. “We have more work [to do] and we are [going] in the right direction.”

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UAE & Israel to explore cooperation in the development of tech ecosystems

“The implementation of a slew of measures and initiatives at both federal and local levels is further enhancing the openness of the UAE economy, presenting a golden opportunity for the Israeli business community to take advantage of the numerous economic prospects that are being currently generated,” said H.E. Dr. Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister of State for Entrepreneurship and SMEs. The Minister made these opening remarks during his participation in the ‘Sharing innovation – A UAE-Israel’ startup ecosystem event, which was organized by Google. With an aim to create an exclusive inner circle of experts to collectively build an ongoing dialogue and collaboration between the UAE and Israeli tech ecosystems, the event brought together policy makers and technology leaders from both the UAE and Israel, in addition to featuring the participation of Google executives. H.E. Dr. Al Falasi further reviewed the UAE’s success in establishing a robust SME sector in line with the highest standards stands out at both regional and international levels. He noted that the sector contributed 53 per cent to the UAE’s GDP in 2019, up from about 49 per cent in 2018. Through the efforts we have currently undertaken, we strive to increase SME sector’s contribution to 60 per cent by 2021, also underscoring its importance in the country’s economic diversification, H.E. explained. The event witnessed the participation of H.E Faisal Al Hammadi, Acting Assistant Undersecretary for Entrepreneurship and SMEs, in the roundtable discussion, where he discussed how the UAE’s economic strategy aligns with the appendix of the Abraham Accords. He added that the UAE’s main focus areas include the retention of high-quality human capital, advancement of key industries enabled by technology such as healthcare, cyber …

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Golf Capital of the world offers UAE residency visa and business licence

Al Hamra in partnership with Ras Al Khaimah Economic Zone (RAKEZ), is offering investors an unparalleled opportunity to secure a 12-year residency visa and a business licence when they purchase a ready-to-move-in seafront or golf-course view home in Al Hamra Village or Bab Al Bahr, two award-winning master-planned communities by Al Hamra, set in the scenic emirate of Ras Al Khaimah. As part of the package, investors will enjoy exceptional incentives and benefits including a 12-year UAE residency visa, a business licence to undertake any of the hundreds of business activities as per the investor’s choice, an additional partner visa and a flexi-desk with modern amenities to conduct business seamlessly. Benoy Kurien, Group CEO of Al Hamra, said, “The UAE is among the top places to live and work in the region, in addition to being ranked as one of the world’s most-preferred tourist destinations. With its vibrant expatriate community, which makes up around 80 per cent of the population, international investors feel instantly at home in the UAE. Further, the nation’s strategic geographical location, government support programmes, policy reforms, and infrastructure offers attractive opportunities for entrepreneurship and business growth. “Ras Al Khaimah, named as the Gulf Tourism Capital for 2021 at the fifth annual meeting of tourism ministers of the Gulf Cooperation Council, is now the fastest-growing tourism and investment destination in the region. The government’s institutional approach has made the Emirate an investment destination of choice for SMEs and big businesses. More than 38,000 companies from 100 countries representing over 50 industries already operate in Ras Al Khaimah. With the launch of our new package, we are offering an extraordinary opportunity for investors to buy-into Al Hamra as …

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Travel Counsellors report hike in holiday travel in November

Travel Counsellors UAE has reported more new bookings were made throughout the month of November 2020 than in November 2019 with sales climbing to 114% of the figures achieved during the same period last year. Holly McCann, General Manager of Travel Counsellors UAE said, “The spike in sales is driven by Travel Counsellors customers pent up demand. Our top selling destination in November was The Maldives and the vast majority of those bookings are travelling within the next 4 weeks. This along with the continued trend towards residents enjoying staycations in the country means that we have seen our trading here very quickly bounce back to pre-covid levels.” Katie McMichael, Marketing Manager said, “The campaign reflects the feelings customers now have towards travel, with many seeing the new year as an opportunity to experience the bucket-list destinations they’ve always dreamed of, whilst others naturally remain cautious, preferring to travel closer to home and the short haul destinations featured on our 2021 list. The recurring theme, however, is the real requirement to book through an experienced travel professional, who will be available to handle any changes to travel arrangements throughout.” McCann added, “Leisure customers and corporate clients who have been unable to travel this year have witnessed first-hand how their Travel Counsellor has looked after every element of their trip, taken care of all amendments, and in many cases rebooked their well-earned break or business trip for a later date. They’ve seen the true value of being able to rely on real, personalised one-to-one advice, feel completely cared for and been able to take advantage of the knowledge base of a global community of nearly 2000 travel professionals, who have come …

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