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At a Glance
- Effective immediately, applicants
renewing their work permits in mainland United Arab Emirates will
be required to amend their job title if it is not on the new list
of occupations for foreign nationals used by the Ministry of Human
Resources and Emiratization.
- Furthermore, due to a discrepancy
between occupation lists used by different government authorities,
the job title printed on a foreign national's work permit may
not match the one printed on the visa sticker endorsed in their
passport; in these cases, foreign nationals will be required to
amend their job title in the immigration system.
- Additionally, applicants renewing
their work permits or amending their salary information or job
title in the mainland must submit an attested education certificate
if required by the occupation list for their job title.
Effective immediately, the Ministry of Human Resources and
Emiratization (MOHRE) has implemented new rules concerning the
amendment of job titles for work permit renewals; job title
discrepancies and requirements for education certificates.
A closer look
Details of the changes include the following:
- Renewal of work
Effective immediately, applicants renewing their work permit in
mainland United Arab Emirates must amend their job title if it is
not on the new list of occupations for foreign nationals used by
- Before, applicants could continue
using their previous job title when they renewed their work permit,
even if the title wasn't consistent with the updated list of
- If the desired job title is not on
the new list of occupations, the employer must amend the title at
the time of renewal of the work permit.
- Employers must carefully select a job
title that matches the foreign national's responsibilities and
- If required by the occupational
classification scheme, the applicant must provide an attested
- Job title
Due to a discrepancy between occupation lists used by different
government authorities, the job title printed on a foreign
national's work permit may not match the one printed on the
visa sticker endorsed in the passport. In such cases, the foreign
national's employer must amend the employment residence permit
file with the immigration authorities.
- Previously, discrepancies between job
titles in labour and immigration files were less common, as the
occupational lists used by the government authorities were more
consistent with each other.
- If there is a discrepancy in the job
titles, the employer could face government fees and the foreign
national will not be allowed to travel internationally until a new
visa sticker is endorsed in their passport.
Applicants renewing their work permits or amending their salary
information or job title in the mainland must submit an attested
education certificate if required for their job title. Under the
UAE occupational classification scheme, each job title belongs to
one of five levels of professional skills which determines whether
or not a degree certificate must be provided.
- Previously, applicants only had to
submit proof of education for a new work permit application or for
the change of job title to one that required a certificate. This
was not required at the work permit renewal stage or for other
labor-related transactions such as the amendment of salary
- Applicants working in the mainland
should keep their education certificates on file after their
initial work permit is granted in case they are required for their
work permit renewal or amendment of salary information or job
- Individuals whose job title is
amended to one that requires proof of education and who did not
have to present such certificate previously should expect delays in
their immigration process until their education certificate has
been attested for use in the United Arab Emirates.
The occupational classification scheme currently used by the
MOHRE is comprised of 1,250 titles in five levels of professional
skills that determine whether an attested education certificate
must be provided by a work permit applicant. The previous list was comprised of over 700 job
titles with job descriptions in nine professional categories. The
MOHRE updates this list frequently to expand the job titles
reserved for UAE nationals and to eliminate the job titles that are
no longer in use in the country. The scheme was implemented to
promote the employment of skilled workers and to increase
transparency in the labor market.
As the United Arab Emirates continues to try to increase Emirati
employment in the private sector (particularly in skilled
professions), additional rules and restrictions on hiring practices
for foreign nationals could be forthcoming. However, the country
intends to balance these restrictions with relaxed rules meant to
attract investment in the country, including the waiver of administrative fines and the introduction of a
long-term residence program. Fragomen will
provide updates as they become available.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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