Everything about e-channel services in the UAE
The UAE, which is currently home to more than 9 million residents, has seen its population grow rapidly in the past few years, owing to the success of federal schemes that woo foreign investment into the country. In conjunction with these efforts, the government has sought to simplify immigration procedures and protocols, making the process of moving to and opening a business in UAE quick and efficient.
What is the e-channel service in UAE?
The e-channel services in Dubai, UAE is the UAE government’s effort to digitise the immigration, residency and visa processes to boost overseas investment. With the ‘UAE 2021’ vision in mind, the Ministry of Interior (MOI) launched e-channel service– ‘Smart Services with Future Vision’, allowing applicants to access applications online for various kinds of travel permits, including employee visas, long-term residency visas, investor visas, as well as temporary visit visas for tourists.
By bringing all visa, residence and immigration processes to one online platform, the government has standardised the system across all the Emirates, making it easier to set up a business in a UAE free zone or mainland.
E-channel services allow users to apply for a visa permit and stay updated about the progress of their applications. They are also able to print visa-related documents using this website. In addition to individual users, e-channel services also offer immigration-related facilities for corporate firms for their employees’ work and residence visas, making company setup in Dubai and UAE easier than ever before.
One country one system
This system has made the whole immigration process efficient by successfully integrating and interconnecting information across all the Emirates. 6 out of 7 emirates use this system, Dubai being an exception. Dubai has its own independent immigration system at present.
The e-channel service also markedly cuts down on required paperwork because the system accepts scanned copies of the original documents. Payment mechanisms have also shifted online, where fees are submitted using secure digital means and receipts are generated through the e-portal.
Free zone vs mainland
While mainland companies may register for e-channel services via the MOI website, Dubai free zone companies must use an agent or their free zone’s login details to access the system and register through their free zone agent or authorised typing centre.
Also, users are required to pay a one-time registration fee of AED 2,200, along with a refundable security deposit of AED 5,000.