Page 1

Issued by the General Directorate of Residency & Foreigners Affairs-Dubai

www.manafezdubai.com

Issue 13

May 2015

Hatta Border: Facilitating faster movement of travellers Schengen visa exemption for UAE nationals

Australia to issue 5 million visas

Windows to introduce biometric sign-in option


Smart choice for a smart living GDRFAD’s mobile application enables: Individuals:

• On arrival visa extension. • Dashboard with all entry permits and residency

applications that are in progress, active, expiring soon or have expired. • Generate barcode to enter smart gate at Dubai Airports. • New and renew sponsored residencies (citizens). • New and renew residency (wife & children). • Attaching required documents. New update: • New entry permit for assistant categories (citizens) • Family passport renewal bouquet (citizens). • Renew passport (citizens only). • MYID

Establishments: • • • •

Extending entry permits (tourist visas). Work entry permit renewal. Before arrival – entry permit cancellation. Printing of Ministry of Labor’s permits. New update: • Dashboard with all entry permits & residences overstays and the ones expiring within 30 days.

Other features:

• • • • • •

Payment gateway. Visa inquiry. News and activities. Amer Car services. User guide. Branches with location maps and contact details. • Multimedia section. • Contact Director General

Mobile application is available on all app stores. Search for: GDRFA Dubai or simply scan the QR code

• Toll free: 8005111


Welcome Message

Reaching Mars W orking in a government body means to

constantly strive to be No. 1. The mission is challenging as one needs to be ceaselessly working toward reaching the top position and always stay ahead of others. There is no chance to sit and wait for things to happen, particularly when we see our country breaking numerous records and when the vision of our leaders is to reach the Mars. I felt immensely proud when Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of UAE and Ruler of Dubai, unveiled the ‘Hope’ Mars Probe, reflecting the Hope of our leader, His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE President, and the people to reach excellence in different areas. It fills me with pride, and at the same time, I feel even more responsible to follow the vision of our leaders, who have, in a very short time, have brought UAE to a position where it is known in the world for its achievements. Following the footsteps of our leaders, who have done their best in every field, the GDRFA in Dubai is also striving to give its best to continue improving the quality of services for our customers who visit Dubai by air, sea or road routes. My recent visit to the Hatta border and Dubai Airports is a part of our strategy to keep improving and checking the quality of services and, at the same time, maintain high standards of safety and security. Infact, I was very delighted with the progress that I saw during the visit. I witnessed how the GDRFA staff, at all levels, is doing their best to ensure passenger facilitation- and achieve our goal to keep people happy , give our customers a highly positive impression about our country and our people and let people experience how

the UAE welcomes its guests from different parts of the world. As everybody knows, border is not just a point to check the entry and exit of passengers. It has, over a period of time, evolved to become a hub that supports the civilization. It contributes to the economy by helping tourism, trade and business. This is in addition to the key role that borders play to keep a country safe from any threats. I would like to thank all my colleagues in the GDRFA and, at the same time, ask them to be ready to make our customers happy and be prepared for the large number of visitors who will come to the UAE via Dubai. We are expecting over 79 million passengers this year through the Dubai Airports and this is in addition to millions who will come via sea and land. I would also like to ask all my colleagues to follow our leaders who have set the ambitious goal of reaching Mars. We should strive to reach the heights of Mars within our country too.

Major General Mohammed Ahmed Al Marri Director General GDRFA-Dubai

|Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 1


GDRFA Message

GDRFA

in History

t

October 1971 Pursuant to an order promulgated by the then Ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum, two departments were established: Central Immigration Department and Ports and Borders Department

t

October 1972 The two departments were merged with the UAE’s Ministry of Interior and Federal Law No. 17 concerning the naturalization and passports was promulgated.

t

1973 Federal Law No. (6) concerning Immigration and Residency was promulgated as the first law regulating the entry and residency of expatriates in United Arab Emirates.

t

1977 The two departments were merged and the new Department shifted to a building in the ministries complex

t

1982 The Administration shifted to the present building during the tenure of Colonel Mohammad Al-Ghaith

t

2003 The building was completely refurbished during the tenure of Brigadier General Saeed Bin Belaila

t

1999 Naturalization and Residency Administration, Dubai, established a branch at Hatta Fort

t

1995 Jebel Ali Port branch was inaugurated

2 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 |

Our Vision: To have the UAE as one of the most secure and safest countries in the world.

Our Mission (MOI):

To work efficiently and effectively towards enhancing the quality of life in the UAE community by providing security, traffic, reform, residency services and ensuring safety of lives and properties.

Our Mission (GDRFA):

For the happiness of the people, we offer excellent and fast naturalization, residence and ports services.

Our Values:       

Justice Team-Work Excellence courtesy Integrity Loyalty Social responsibility

Strategic objectives:  Promote safety and security.  Promote public confidence in the effectiveness of services provided.  Optimal use of intelligence.  Ensure all administrative services are provided based on quality, efficiency and transparency standards.

To communicate with GDRFA: Location: Aljaffilya - Bur Dubai PO Box : UAE – Dubai 4333 Email: amer@dnrd.ae Toll Free Number: 04 3139999 - 8005111 Working Hours: 8:00 AM - 8:00 PM GDRFA-Dubai http:// www.dnrd.ae Dubai Airport Freezone http://www.dafz.ae Dubai Public Prosecution http://www.dxbpp.gov.ae Dubai Municipality https://www.dm.gov.ae

Department of Economic Development http://www.dubaided.gov.ae Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing http://www.dubaitourism.ae Land and Property Department http://www.dubailand.gov.ae


Contents

GDRFA News GDRFA Photographes by: Abdulrahman Abdullah Sanjeev Kochan

UAE News

GDRFA Dubai sets up more self-service kiosks

P 12

Sharjah announces new cruise terminal in Khor Fakkan

RAK residency enquiries via Twitter

P 24

P 25

DOHA to have single counter for MoI services

P 32

Honorary President Major General Mohammed Ahmed Almarri Director General

General Supervision Major General Obaid Muhair Bin Suroor Deputy Director General

Middle East News KSA to issue online visit visas for expat families

Monthly newsletter issued by GDRFA-Dubai

General Coordinator Captain Khalid Al Rahma Editorial Consultant Ghassan Suleiman Creative Manager Mohammed Al Jarouf Executive Editors Shveta Pathak

P 32 Strategic Technology Partner of GDRFA-Dubai

Panoramic view of future travel

Advertise with us Content, Production, Marketing & Advertising

P 42

Nadd Al Shiba PR and Event Management Phone: + 9714 2566707 Fax: + 9714 2566704 Website

www.naddalshiba.com

Email

info@naddalshiba.com

|Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 3


GDRFA News

Facilitating speedy transit of passengers

Al Marri visits Hatta border

H is Excellency Major General Moham-

med Ahmed Al Marri, Director General of the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs in Dubai (GDRFA-Dubai), recently visited the Hatta border linking UAE to Oman to inspect the progress of workflow on the border to facilitate faster movement of passengers. During the inspection, Major General Al Marri urged the GDRFA employees to welcome travellers and the users of the border with kindness and to keep offering the best services so as to maintain the country’s vision of being the best worldwide. He asked the staff to ensure smooth and fast movement of the travelers through the border. Major General Al Marri also appreciated the cooperation and the team work among the staff to achieve the strategic objectives of the GDRFA.

4 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 |

The visit to the Hatta border was a part of inspection tours by the GDRFA Dubai to follow up on various sectors of GDRFA and to check on the workflow and to evaluate the procedures and so as to specify a viable way to develop the work.

Major General Al Marri visited the new building of the GDRFA to follow up on workflow in the building and also visited passports control counters to check the procedures to complete the passengers transactions at the land borders, and then listened


GDRFA News

to a briefing from officials on statistics about movement of travelers during the first quarter of this year. Major General Al Marri also inspected building facilities and services at

the border, to ensure speedy transit of passengers to and from the UAE through Hatta border crossing in line with the GDRFA’s aim to provide facilities to passengers using the Hatta

border, an important commercial and tourism gateway between the UAE and Oman, for individuals as well as companies. Major General Al Marri appreciated the fruitful cooperation between the GDRFA and the concerned authorities and their contribution in facilitating the movement of passengers, emphasising that all departments in the country are working with a team spirit which will reflect positively on the quality of services provided. Colonel Hussein Ibrahim, Assistant of the Director General for Land Ports and Sea borders also has accompanied Major General Al Marri during the inspection tour alongwith Brigadier Awad Aoyaim, Assistant to the Director General for Human Resources and Captain Rashid Al Ketbi, Hatta border’s director. |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 5


GDRFA News

A’aber:

The GDRFA established a new portal concept, called A’aber, between the land borders of UAE and Oman with the goal of providing easier access to passport control services to thousands of travelers transiting via the border.

“A’aber is an electronic system to offer an easy transit of passengers through the land border, which will work on capturing passengers’ information by a radio frequency identification (RFID) by scanning special e-cards used by passengers while they

are sitting in their vehicles,” Major General Al Marri, told Gulf News in a previous interview. The electronic system aims at facilitating easy movement of passengers by ascertaining all information related to an individual at once. The system is based on registering and issuing cards that would record the entry and exit of travellers across the land border, doing away with waiting lists, thereby enhancing travel experience. More than 155,000 people use the Hatta crossing on a monthly basis to travel between the UAE and Oman. With rising number of commercial and tourism related projects in the UAE and Oman, the new system would be particularly beneficial. 

6 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 |


GDRFA News

PCLA launches year-long awareness campaign said: “We want to raise public awareness, especially among unskilled workers, about their rights and duties which will reflect positively on their happiness and will also ensure they are secure and stable.”

T he

Permanent Committee for Labour Affairs (PCLA) in Dubai has started a year-long campaign to make residents aware of their rights and duties. The awareness campaign is being carried out in collaboration with Zajel, which will awareness brochures to those who are applying for new residency visa or renewing their residency visas. The brochures will be given to the applicants alongwith their passports via Zajel service. To ensure that a maximum number of residents can benefit through the campaign, PCLA and Zajel will also distribute awareness brochures alongwith the reports of medical fitness tests, udenrtaken as a part of the visa process. His Excellency Major General Obaid Mohair Bin Surour, Deputy Director General of the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs in Dubai and Chairman of the Permanent Committee for Labour Affairs (PCLA) in Dubai,

“We want to encourage workers to communicate with the PCLA or any other concerned authorities in case they need to pursue their rights as we want them to know that while they abide by the laws, the government will also ensure that their rights are protected. Hence, we decided to distribute the awareness brochures for all residents in Dubai whether they are getting new visas, renewing their visas or getting medical fitness tests done,” he added. Khawla Kabanji, Chief Executive Officer of ZAJEL Courier Services, said the campaign has already started since the beginning of the week and thousands of brochures were distributed to people in less than two days. Khawla noted that the brochures are to be distributed to all residents in Dubai, but the focus will be more on the unskilled workers or those with lower level of education, such as workers and domestic helpers. She said that PCLA has printed the awareness brochures in English, Arabic and Urdu.

Zajel delivers atleast 10,000 passports every day to residents, including the issuance of a new residency or renewal of residence, in addition to delivering the medical fitness certificates, added Khawla. She said that passports are delivered to either the applicant or the sponsor or the company that applied for visas for their workers. Khawla added: “This step is important and we will work hard to make it succeed.” Abdel Monem Mubarak Al Medawi, Coordinator of PCLA in Dubai, said that the campaign will continue atleast for a year and is expected to have significant impact in raising the awareness of residents in Dubai. It will also ease the pressure on the workers as they will know the laws of the country and this would help to avoid any future problems may arise from misunderstandings and miscommunication between the two parties, he added. Al Medawi asked for cooperation from the sponsors and companies in order to raise awareness among all residents . He explained that the brochures contain an explanation of some crimes and punishments in addition to the Dubai Police operations phone number 901 and the PCLA toll free number : 8009119.  |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 7


GDRFA News

‘Number of cruise tourists has increased to half a million’

Al Marri:

Significant efforts have been made by the GDRFA at the sea ports to offer unique services

H is Excellency Major General Mo-

hammed Ahmed Al Marri, Director General of the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs in Dubai (GDRFA-Dubai) said that efforts to develop work in various sectors in the GDRFA is the result of the everlasting support of His Highness General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior.

8 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 |

Dubai is expected to receive more than 600,000 cruise tourists this year

Major General Al Marri said the development of the services at Dubai seaports has made the sea borders among the world’s top destinations

for winter cruise tourism due to the quality of work and this has been possible due to the efforts of GDRFA staff.He said cruise tourism in the UAE in general and in Dubai, in particular, is increasing steadily with Dubai receiving more than half a million cruise tourists in 2014 and the numbers expected to cross 600,000 this year as more vessels sailing into the UAE waters.


GDRFA News

Quick services, efficiency of staff and facilities contributing to rising number of tourists

“From about 10,000 cruise tourists in 1998, to more than half-a-million now, Dubai has seen a high growth in cruise tourism, that too given the fact that the tourist season in Dubai is from October to July only.” Al Marri said the aim is to attract more tourists by offering unique services to people and also through marketing efforts such as coordinating with authorities like the DP World and the Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) to promote tourism in Dubai and in the country. Colonel Hussein Ibrahim, Assistant of the Director-General for the Sea and Land ports at the GDRFA-Dubai, said that there are six seaports in Dubai- Jebel Ali Port, Port Rashid Port, Al Shindagha Port, Al Hamriya Port, the Dry Dock Port in addition to the Creek-and the GDRFA-Dubai offers different kind of services at those ports such as the registration of ships and sailors’ registration, dealing with tourists, visa issuing and more, adding: “Due to the fact that Dubai airport offers flights all over the world and due to the unique services offered by all the concerned authorities in Dubai, shipping and tourist companies prefer to come via Dubai seaport.” Colonel Hussein said some vessels that arrive to Dubai seaports have to change the crew which means that sailors leave via Dubai airport and others join. Also tourists in a cruise coming from around the world most often use Dubai airport to return to their countries and according to official statistics 75 per cent of tourists across the sea ports in Dubai return to their country through Dubai airport. He said that cruise tourism in Dubai is increasing steadily and the emirate received very high number of cruise tourists in 2013 and 2014 due to the quality of services provided. Alongwith cruise tourists, the GDRFA staff also deal with the crew in the ship, each of them with staff between 1,500-2,000. He added that number of tourists are expected to witness a further rise with a rise in the number of cruise

Colonel Hussein Ibrahim

ships, which has been increased upto four every day. Most of the cruise ships are coming from Europe and they stop here to load or unload passengers or tourists. Quick services, efficiency of the staff and the facilities provided contribute to the rising numbers , he added. “In order to facilitate and speed up the procedures, we are checking on tourists before the arrival of the vessel. We check the names and documents before the arrival of the ship which allows easy pass for the tourists without stopping and without the need to go through any processes inside the port.” “In addition, the new UAE rule that gives multipleentry visas to cruise passengers has proved a boost to the sector in this season,” said Colonel Hussein. The rule, which came into place last year, allows cruise tourists to get a multiple-entry visa for all the UAE ports in their itinerary for AED 200. Tourists can enter the UAE through any of its airports, continue on a cruise out of its ports, and come back to the UAE on the same visa. |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 9


GDRFA News

“The number of tourist will certainly increase because of the reduced hassle and cheaper costs,” he said. “Though the procedure to get such a visa remains the same, it is now simplified as passengers can get it in one step, and for travellers from the subcontinent it will be cheaper,” said Colonel Hussein. He added that there are also passengers from 46 countries who can enter the UAE without the need for prior visa and that number was earlier 33 countries.“The increase in the number of countries contributed to the increase of vessels sailing into UAE waters,” he said. 10 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 |

Visa processes have been simplified

Colonel Hussein said the ship movements at the Dubai ports, both arrivals and departures, touched 59,197 in 2014, which is an increase of 14 per cent compared to the previous year. The GDRFA also dealt with 402 conveyances through Dubai ports during 2014. The number of arrivals and departure was 185,450 and 187,473 in 2013 and 2014 compared to 2012 and 2013 when this

number was 126,534 arrival and 128,588 departures. The number of tourists traveling at the end of the current season of 2015 is expected to reach 559,000 with an increase of up to 13 percent from previous year. The figures are in line with the forecast as DTCM expects Dubai to receive 600,000 cruise tourists by 2016 with new cruise liners coming to region. While the number of ordinary passengers in 2013 arrived at the ports reached 10,927 and at the departure 11,040, in 2014 the number of


GDRFA News

Hamdan bin Mohammed Cruise Terminal welcomes passengers round the clock

He said the staff completes at least 2,000 transactions for each ship including the crew and tourists every trip. Capt. Ahmed said that in Port Rashid, the Terminal 3 ‘Hamdan bin Mohammed’ building receives passengers for 24 hours all seven days of the week and is equipped with the best technology for fast processing and there are in the building 80 counters in the departure only, adding that the Dubai’s Mina Rashid Cruise Terminal can handle seven cruise vessels simultaneously. The terminal can processes 14,000 passengers a day.

arrivals was 13,533 and 12,441 for departures. The number of arrivals and departures in 2014 through the port of Jebel Ali was 382,466; at Port Rashid 83,977; Dry Dock 16,627 Hamriya Port 87,502 and at Al Shindagha Port 119,385. The total number of departures and arrivals through these ports in 2014 jumped to 689,957 compared to 614,498 in 2013, while the number in 2012 was 575,655. Colonel Hussein added that there are large numbers of travellers

coming from all over the world and cruise ship coming from the GCC that stops at more than one stations after which returns to Dubai with each trip taking around five days in the Gulf Sea. Colonel Hussien said that these vessels organise tours and tour packages and some tourists return to their home countries via Dubai airport while some of them stay for a day or two here. Captain Ahmed Isaac, Head of Passports control section at GDRFA at Port Rashid, said “the port is quite busy and we are working 24 hours in ports to finalise public transactions”.

Captain Ibrahim Abdullah Al Saadi, Head of Ship Crew, Visa Section at GDRFA at Port Rashid, said the sections issue sailors an entry visa for 96 hours and this year, till March, the sections issued 3,324 sailors visas. The number of sailors’ visas in Port Rashid has increased during the three months from 3,020 in the first quarter of 2013; to 3,195 during the first quarter of 2014. Khaled Khairallah Mohammed, security first officer at Port Rashid, spoke on the security of Terminal 3 that during peak hours. He said more than four ships carrying over 7,000 passengers arrive at Port Rashid every day.  |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 11


GDRFA News

GDRFA Dubai sets up more self-service kiosks F ollowing the success of its Amer

self-services kiosk, which provides round the clock GDRFA-related information and services, the General Directorate for Residency and Foreigners Affairs in Dubai (GDRFADubai) has set up more such kiosks in different areas across the emirate. Customers can follow up on the processing of their transactions through the Amer self-service ki-

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osks, set up in different locations, to facilitate its services, simplify procedures and provide convenient service to the public. The kiosks allow customers to perform a variety of operations without the need to visit GDRFA’s counters including applying for and enquiring about visa status, printing residence visa and other types of visas. Emiratis have the facility to renew

their passports instantly through this self-service.The GDRFA-D encourages people to use the Amer self-service kiosks available at Dubai International Airport, Ministry of labour, Sharjah Airport, the GDRFA-Dubai headquarters and the external offices of GDRFA. His Excellency Major General Mohammad Ahmad Al Marri, Director General of the General Directorate


GDRFA News

for Residency and Foreigners Affairs in Dubai, said the Amer selfservice kiosk reflects the vision of the GDRFA-Dubai to offer best services to the public with high efficiency. He said it provides the most advanced e-services to the public and is simple to use. Major General Al Marri explained that the Amer self-service kiosk is built with touch screen using which the customers can inquire about services offered by the GDRFA-Dubai in an easy and efficient way around the clock. "The aim of this technology is to encourage the use of ‘self-service’

and the beneficiaries include companies, individuals, sponsors and others,” he said. Major General Al Marri said as the customers do not need to visit the GDRFA counters for their applications, it will save their time.“The self-service kiosk will allow people to complete visa-related paperwork at leisure or while shopping or spending time with their families at shopping centers,” said Maj. General Al Marri. Through these kiosks, the residents can check the status of their visas and print out their resident/visit visa and visa extensions.

The machines will also allow Emiratis to apply for passport renewal services without visiting GDRFADubai offices. In addition, residents can also take prints of their labour permits and pay fines for expired residence visas, added Major General Al Marri. Six of the kiosks are stationed at the main building of the GDRFA-Dubai whereas there is one each at the Dubai International Airport, Al Tawar Centre; the Ministry of Labour offices and Sharjah International Airport, in addition to four kiosks at the external centers of the GDRFADubai. Those applying for entry visas for relatives or employees headed to Dubai will be able to check the application status in real time and obtain print-outs of documents. Major General Al Marri said these kiosks are an addition to the GDRFA-Dubai existing services offered to the clients to simplify the procedures and to use the latest data management technology to offer quality services. The kiosk has a touch screen offering three options: individual log-in, companies log-in and general information. Following the authentication process, residents can select out of visa, residency, statistics and passport options and enquire about or print their visas. For more inquires, the GDRFA-D has a toll free number 8005111 or email: amer@dnrd.ae. 

|Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 13


GDRFA News

International Workers' Day celebrated T he Land Borders’ Department at the

General Directorate for Residency and Foreigners Affairs in Dubai (GDRFA-Dubai) marked the International Workers' Day by organising celebrations at it's premises. The celebration was attended by workers and public, in addition to staff and officials from GDRFA-Dubai. The Permanent Committee for Labour Affairs in Dubai (PCLA) , in cooperation with the Community Development Authority, also celebrated the International Workers’ Day in Friday at Dulsco company premises. The celebration was attended by over 2,500 workers and representatives from Dubai Police, Human rights, Dubai courts, PCLA, Department of Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities among others.

14 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 |

During the event, several activities were organised including entertainment sports, and the distribution of t-shirts, juices and snacks. Major General Obaid Muhair Bin Surour, Deputy Director General, GDRFA-D, and Head of PCLA, said: “By celebrating the International Workers’ Day, we wanted to express our gratitude to workers who make a lot of efforts and are devoted to their work.” “We are all workers and we are all here to serve our country,” he added. Major General Bin Surour appreciated the efforts of all the workers in the UAE, saying that they have a key role in in the development of the country. He said the PCLA is keen to cooperate with strategic partners and with federal and local government and the private sector in order to protect labours’ rights.

The UAE celebrates annually the International Workers’ day as gesture of thankfulness and appreciation for the great role played by workers to build the country. According to Abdul Momen Al Medawi, Coordinator of PCLA in Dubai the celebration is part of the PCLA one week celebration to mark the International Workers’ day. “We want workers to be happy and we want them to know that we care about them because they are part of our life,” he said. The PCLA also distributed wristwatches and other gifts to workers on the occasion. The PCLA visited different companies who abide to workers’ safety requirements in accordance with the rules. 


GDRFA News

GDRFA Dubai welcomes Canadian delegation

H is Excellency Major General Mo-

hammed Ahmed Al Marri, Director General of the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs in Dubai (GDRFA-Dubai), welcomed Larisa Galadza, Director General, Admissibility Branch, Citizenship and Immigration in Canada and the accompanying Canadian delegation to the UAE, in his office. During the meeting, GDRFA Dubai and the Canadian delegation discussed ways to enhance mutual cooperation, joint cooperation especially in the field of residency, regulations related to issues such as citizenship, residency, ports and

borders and related issues. They also exchanged views on a number of issues of mutual interest. The meeting was also attended by Ahmed Saeed Elham Al Dahiri, Director of the Consulate Service. Among others present were senior officials and the assistants of the director general at the GDRFADubai.The delegation also talked about the function and mechanism of work at the naturalization department at the GDRFA-Dubai and on the foreign affairs and ports in Dubai. The delegates were also briefed on the latest achievements and

services provided to the public at GDRFA. The Canadian delegation also visited Port Rashid and where they were told about the services provided to the tourists and visitors who enter the country via Port Rashid. The delegation visited the newly inaugurated Hamdan bin Mohammed Cruise Terminal at Port Rashid which considered as the largest building for travelers via the sea in the Middle East. The Canadian delegation was impressed by the highly sophisticated and advanced services offered by the GDRFA-Dubai. ď‚… |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 15


GDRFA News

GDRFA Dubai and DP World sign MoU

I n order to enhance the level of ser-

vices provided by Dubai government for investors and companies in all sectors, the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs in Dubai (GDRFA-Dubai) and DP World have singed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for more cooperation between the two sides and to work together on providing the high quality services and facilities to customers in accordance with the best international practices applied in this field and to support economic and social development in the UAE in general, and Dubai in particular. The MoU was signed at the headquarters of the GDRFA-Dubai by HE Major General Mohammed Ahmed Al Marri, Director General of the GDRFA and HE Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Chairman of DP World, Chairman of Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation, in the presence of officials from both sides. The MoU aims to promote cooperation between the two parties, enhance

16 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 |

efficiencies in all fields, promote the exchange of knowledge and expertise and institutional experiences at all levels so as to contribute to the development of the country and to build bridges of cooperation, communication and coordination between the two parties to serve the public. Major General Al Marri said: “The signing of a MoU with DP World will promote the cooperation between government departments and the competent authorities and it will help in the development of the country in all sectors.” He said that the GDRFA is keen to put all of its expertise to strengthen the cooperation with all parties. He also praised the achievements of Dubai Ports World. Major General Al Marri stressed on the importance of this MoU for the development of internal and external partnerships for the interest of the country and the development of various sectors, for the benefit of all parties.

HE Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, said: “DP World, as a global leader in the management and operation of international ports, is keen to cooperate with GDRFA-Dubai to develop the level of services provided at the sites and facilities of the company in Dubai. The work of DP World expanded globally and we have gained great experience by working with 65 port and terminal across the world, and are pleased to offer the experience we have gained through working in different countries and regions to contribute to the promotion and development of services provided to customers.” “The exchange of knowledge and experiences with the government department that provides important and vital services for public such as the GDRFA, will contribute to achieving the best for public. We believe that teamwork is the only way to succeed and to progress to reach number one.” 


Our

Message

Positive Workers K nowledge improves life. It gives people

more opportunities to live better as well as build a better future for themselves and their families. In a country like the UAE, where people from more than 200 nationalities live and work, it becomes all the more important to ensure those people are well - equipped with the knowledge of rules and regulations and their rights and duties. The Permanent Committee for Labour Affairs (PCLA) has started a new campaign this year that focusses on generating awareness among workers in Dubai, especially those who are new to Dubai. In order to ensure that they do not get themselves in difficult situations, which can affect their work and put them on wrong side of the law, the PCLA has made a lot of efforts in the last few months to launch this awareness campaign. During this campaign, messages and information targeting thousands of workers in Dubai will be shared through pop up advertisements, brochures, photographs, as well as activities. Our aim, through the campaign, is to benefit both employers as well as employees, build an environment of mutual cooperation to keep them satisfied and happy. The initiative has been started in cooperation with Zajel, who will place flyers and information in the passports after visa stamping, when Zajel delivers the passports to them.

This new initiative will help us build a positive relationship between the workers and their organisations because we believe that the workers who are well aware of the laws and culture and about the regulations of their organisations, will be positive workers. On the other side we also want the companies to know that they should give workers their due rights for a better, stable and a mutually beneficial relation. On this occasion (of launching this initiative), I would like to thank the team in the PCLA, Zajel and all those who have contributed to make this campaign a successful one. I believe that this campaign will strengthen the belief that workers can build their future while they fulfil their duties and get their rights and, the companies believe that workers are the most important asset for them. We aim to provide equality and a better future for both.

Major General Obaid Moheir bin Suroor Deputy Director General GDRFA-Dubai

|Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 17


Cover Story

Angela Gittens: Dubai is exemplary in shared vision A ngela Gittens, Director General of

Airports Council International (ACI), the global body for the world’s airports, is a strong believer in Collaborative Decision Making (CDM).

From governments to airlines and airports, each one needs to have a common goal to be able to enhance passenger experience, says Gittens as she lauds Dubai for being exemplar in its single vision. In an exclusive interview with Manafez Dubai, Angela talked about ways to cope with rising number of travelers, safety, using technology to its best, ACI and other issues concerning aviation sector. Excerpts from the interview: How do you think governments, airlines and airports can contribute to facilitating passenger experience? The first thing is that each stakeholder needs to see it as a part of their role to facilitate passenger journey. Each stakeholder has a specific job- it could be security, immigration, travel in case of airline and, for the airport, having the facilities ready. But each one also needs to see that facilitating the passenger journey is important to them in 18 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 |

In having a secure airport, a safe airport, a secure border, all the stakeholders will benefit. Once we put that in place, they can communicate about the best ways of accomplishing those joint goals.

At what level of this cooperation are we on? At this conference, I saw there were various authorities in the room the entire time- airport, airlines and government. Dubai is exemplary in shared vision, starting at the top with leadership of the country on what the aviation sector means to the economy. That cascades through all of the processes. My guess is that there is a very mature level of cooperation and collaboration already taking place.

We saw during sessions in the Future of Borders 2015 Conference that there are lots of technological tools that can help, there are process changes that can help. Instead of putting in new infrastructure or technology, just changing the way certain things are approached has proved effective in facilitating passenger journey.

What is the role of ACI and Middle East? The ACI has two main objectives. One is to protect the interest of airports and communities they serve and the other is to promote excellence of airports. So we do lot of things in the world office, we work with ICAO especially to make sure interests of airports are properly

addition to the specific role that they have. Once that happens, they have something to communicate on because they have that common goal because all stakeholders benefit from facilitating passenger journey.


Cover Story

represented in decision making. At the regional level, the regional office works with national government .

and it is important for the region to get airport collaborative decision making. We’ve seen it in Europe and it is doing a good job there; it is something I would want airports in the Middle East to embrace. The other things some airports in the Middle East are embracing is smart security projects. We are piloting different technology, different procedures and processes to have a more effective and smoother security process.

To promote excellence, we have a variety of training programmes. Abu Dhabi is a training centre, so a very convenient place nearby. There are management level as well as entry courses, we have online courses, airport service quality programme which provides for benchmarking passenger satisfaction against others, tells you what your passengers care about most, what they like and what they don’t and what you can improve upon. We also have a safety peer review wherein we assemble a group pf experts from ACI and other airports to go to your airport and see your compliance and any other issues you want to discuss, especially on safety management systems. We bring experts who have done it in their airports to give advice. Even a very well developed airport can use a peer review.

Are you planning a representative office in this region? The Middle East is served by the Hong Kong office, Asia Pacific region. We think we can serve it very well from there. The Middle East is very active on our boards- the Asia pacific as well as the world boards. The biggest concern I have with Middle East is on airport collaborative decision making because skies in this region are very crowded. This is the highest growth region in the world

We all agree we cannot continue to deal with security the way we have been doing it with the kind of growth we are witnessing, we don’t have the space, the time as we did earlier. ACI is working with IATA on smart security project

Amid the existing constraints and given the growth, what are the solutions? There are different solutions. We are piloting, for example in Amsterdam, they are looking at a whole new security screening centre, with some new features. It is centralized and they have made it very consumer friendly and welcoming, it helps people relax. Generally if you think of security, you think of processes, of having to take your laptop and other stuff out and then put it back again, the entire process could be stressful. |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 19


Cover Story

Dubai is exemplar of what can happen when stakeholders collaborate

They’ve made it easy and the screening itself is done remotely and they can screen more than one at a time. ACI has is working with IATA on Smart Security project. The objective is to improve the journey from curb to boarding, where passengers proceed through security checkpoints with minimal inconvenience, where security resources are allocated based on risk and where airport facilities can be optimized. Machines can do a lot. In immigration, 99.9 per cent of the times, the passenger is not a high risk one. By making your trained operators do the process for everyone, you are making them tired, bored and ineffective. We should let the machines do the routine. Humans should be focusing on the complex. Testing of technology in Amsterdam is in process and there are other pilots. How will other airports benefit from this? We will start sharing as the pilots start showing success. As we get good results, we will share the ways they can help the governments, airports as well as airlines. It is a good example collaboration among the key stakeholders. What is your opinion about Open Sky Policy and the recent disagreements surrounding it. Open sky has been a boon to mankind. Liberalisation is, in general, something ACI supports.

military can always have the airspace they need. Its needed. Sharing the airspace is one of the solutions. Within that airport collaborative decision making becomes important so that there is sharing of data among the stakeholders so that whatever space you have is optimized. Enforcing slots, for example, is important. These are some of the tools that would be need to get some space.

The US is a competitive market and is designed to be so. The airlines should compete on global market place as well. We have not seen any signs that the US is gravitating toward a return.

Now there also are systems to use more technology so aircrafts can fly more closely. Right now they’re spaced very far for safety reasons. Smart aircraft, can actually fly much closer together and be completely safe.

What is the solution to crowded skies? There are ways of sharing milliary airspace. The

The spacing is because today’s radar is uncertain you have lot of space to make sure there is very large mar-

20 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 |


Cover Story

We should let the machines do the routine

gin. As technology is deployed, you don’t need those large margins. So you could get many more places through same amount of space and safety that we have now. That’s going to be the future. Coming to oil prices do you think it is good for the aviation industry? Its very good for the aviation industry. However, it’s a global market these days. While it is good for aviation industry, it

has consequences for various economies and could wind up reducing demand. But, overall it’s a good thing. On the surge, do you think it’s a good idea for airports to expand and build? There are other are solutions. Airport collaborative decisions can help. You can manage the surge smartly in a smaller space if you plan well. By making sure you are staffed immediately when the surge starts, have design flexibility, like they did in Brussels, you can save millions of investment. It is not easy, but it can be done and technology certainly can play a great role in this.

How do you analyse Dubai’s aviation sector. Dubai is exemplar of what can happen when you stakeholders collaborate on shared vision. Starting with the leadership of this country to other stakeholders, everyone is working with a single vision. All of the collaborative decision making is toward that objective. Unlike many other countries where you have conflicting agenda. In Dubai everyone working toward single agenda. That’s why you have the kind of growth you have. You have a very well developed economy, a very well developed aviation system; excellent airlines, airports due to this shared vision.  |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 21


UAE News

Schengen visa exemption for UAE nationals

U

AE nationals can now travel to Schengen zone countries without obtaining a prior visa.

The agreement granting visa exemption to UAE nationals was signed between the UAE and EU representatives in Brussels earlier this month. The visa exemption implies that Emiratis can travel to 34 European countries, including 28 Schengen states and need to present only a 22 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 |

valid passport at the destination country. They can then stay for 90 uninterrupted days or six months with interruption. With this, the UAE becomes the first Arab nation to enjoy the Schengen visa waiver. Sulaiman Hamid

Almazroui, UAE Ambassador to the Kingdom of Belgium and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and the European Union, was quoted by the media as speaking at the signing ceremony that: “This is a historic moment in the relationship between the UAE and the EU. The Schengen waiver agreement was an initiative that’s been there for three years.


UAE News

Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE Foreign Minister, in an earlier Tweet had said “A new achievement of the UAE diplomacy... exempting the Emiratis from Schengen soon”. The tweet got a massive response with a large number of people welcoming the exemption.

Today, it’s been successfully concluded by the signing ceremony at the EU Council.” It was about one year ago that the European Parliament voted in favour of waiving off the Schengen visa requirements for UAE nationals. A total of 523 votes were cast in favour of the decision by 577 EU representatives. The visa exemption was much looked forward to.

At the signing ceremony, Almazroui was quoted as saying: “This achievement puts the icing on the cake and complements the already strong and growing bond between the UAE and the European Union. It will no doubt improve many things such as trade, investment, tourism and cultural exchanges.” The agreement further strengthens the position of the UAE Passport in terms of ease of travel and visa free entry and a UAE passport holder is now able to enjoy visa exemptions to over 100 countries. UAE, most powerful passport in the region The UAE already has the topranked passport in the region, ac-

cording to the latest Arton Capital’s Passport Index. The Index has ranked UAE passport, which offers visa-free travel to 72 countries, as number 47 in the world. The index is an online interactive tool that collects, displays and ranks the passports of the world based on the number of countries that passport-holders are allowed to travel visa-free. In November 2013, the UAE also qualified for a new visa-free travel scheme for its passport holders to the United Kingdom.

Trade Relations

Relations between the European Union (EU) and the UAE have increased in recent years and are expected to be enhanced in light of the new visa rules and growing bilateral trade. While UAE is the EU’s 14th largest trade partner and the EU is the UAE’s second biggest trading partner. Trade between the two sides reached 55 billion euros (Dh228.59 billion), according to the official figures of EU, at the beginning of 2014.  |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 23


UAE News

RAK residency enquiries via Twitter

T he General Directorate of Residency

prove and develop the mechanism of the department and to interact with as large a number of people as possible.

and Foreigners Affairs department of Ras Al Khaimah on Monday launched a new service “for public complaints, suggestions and queries” through its account on Twitter, Gulf News reported. The service offers answers to all immigration enquires in Arabic and English, the report quoted Mohammad Al Naqbi, from the department as saying. The service will be

available on Twitter every Monday starting from 9am until 11am. The purpose behind the idea is to im-

UAE records $67 billion in foreign direct outflows

T he value of UAE’ foreign direct outflows

stood at $67 billion (Dh245.9 billion) in 2014, Sultan Al Mansouri, UAE Minister of Economy said at Ministerial Roundtable at the Annual Investment Meeting 2015, Gulf News reported. Most of these investments are related to various businesses in energy, real estate, telecommunication, ports development and management, hospitality, infrastructure, banking and financial services as well as industrial sectors, he said. These investments are located in different countries including Sweden, America, Korea, Africa and several countries in the Arab world, the report quoted Al Mansouri as saying. “According to the UAE economic plan, we don’t focus our investment in one basket. We intend to diversify the investments as well as the markets,” Al Mansouri said. 

24 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 |

“To ask a question, related to all kinds of immigration queries, then you can visit the Twitter account of the Ras Al Khaimah General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs Department and you will get the proper answer,” Al Naqbi said. 

Ramadan night market from July 2 T he

organizer of the Ramadan Night Market which is held annually during the holy month in Dubai has invited investors and retailers from within and outside the UAE to take part in the fourth edition, reported Emirates 247.The fourth edition of the 10-day annual market will run from July 2 to 11 at Sheikh Rashid Hall, Dubai World Trade Centre from 8 pm to 2 am. The Ramadan Night Market features products and brands from around the region, including Clothing, Jewellery &

Accessories, Health & Beauty Products, Personal Care, Perfumes, Food, Home Appliances, Electronics, Toys & Baby Items, Handicrafts, Souvenirs & Collectibles, Travel & Tourism, Handwriting Analysis, Automobiles and much more Sunil Jaiswal, President of Sumansa Exhibitions, organiser of Ramadan Night Market, said: “We had a huge footfall of over 125,000 visitors during our 2014 edition, whereas this edition is poised to be bigger and better with new attractions and engaging activities. 


UAE News

Sharjah announces new cruise terminal in Khor Fakkan T he Port of Khor Fakkan is plan-

ning to build a new cruise terminal to increase the port’s capacity and allow it to accommodate larger cruise vessels, according to Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq), said an arabiansupplychain.com report. The new cruise terminal at Khor Fakkan is part of Sharjah’s goal to develop its cruise tourism business and enhance its credentials as a cruise port. With the 2014-2015 cruise season wrapping up, Sharjah has been visited 36 times by cruise ships sailing round trip and singly from Dubai, bringing in more than 80,000 tour-

ists to the emirate, according to the Middle East cruise magazine Cruise Arabia. Khor Fakkan has reportedly been visited 22 times by several cruise ships, with 66,000 tourists coming ashore during the Middle East cruise season, which typically runs from October to April. The new cruise terminal plans were announced by a spokesperson of Sharjah’s Department of Seaports and

Customs via Sharjah Radio’s Direct Line show, after they were approved by HH Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Ruler of Sharjah and supreme council member. Construction of the new terminal will begin this year, the report quoted the authority as saying. It will include dedicated facilities for port customs, immigration authorities, police and visiting tourists. 

UAE nationals believe workplace has effective localization policies

A majority (60.09 per cent) of UAE nationals believe

that their current workplace has effective localization policies, with 37.09 per cent believing that the policies are very effective, according to ‘Nationalization in the GCC’ poll, recently conducted by Bayt.com, a leading career site in the Middle East. Less than one out of 10 respondents believe that localization policies at their place of work are not effective at all. 40.09 per cent of respondents said that leading job sites, followed by career fairs (16.82 per cent) are the main avenues for companies to recruit local talent, according to the poll. However, an overwhelming majority (87.23 per cent) still believe that the UAE relies more on expatriates to take on specialized knowledge-

based jobs (in fields such as IT, health services and engineering, among others).A majority of the respondents (64.78 per cent) believe that the unemployment rate among local talent in the UAE is low, while over one third (35.22 per cent) conversely believe that unemployment rates are high. However, almost half of the respondents believe that finding and hiring local talent is extremely easy, while two out of 10 believe the opposite is true.  |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 25


UAE News

UAE road show to promote tourism from India T he UAE’s National Council for Tourism and Antiquities

has launched a road show in India to promote tourism from India, according to a WAM report. Mohammed Khamis bin Hareb Al Muhairi, DirectorGeneral of the National Council for Tourism and Antiquities, said that the Indian market is one of the major markets contributing to the tourism industry in the world, and the UAE in particular, due to the geographical proximity and the ancient cultural ties between India and the Gulf.The convoy is visiting three of India’s largest cities, New Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore and will also meet with a large number of specialists, decision makers, and other significant figures representing various sectors in the Indian tourism industry. The meetings intend to introduce them to UAE’s tourism landmarks and to finalise deals between companies in the two countries regarding touristic packages for the future. He said that the road show, organised under the hashtag “VisitUAE”, was launched by Sheikh Nahyan bin

Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Culture, Youth Community Development, and Chairman of the National Council for Tourism and Antiquities, to promote UAE tourism through information and pictures. Mohammed Khamis bin Hareb Al Muhairi said that the road show is the second tourism promotion convoy to India. The first was in 2012, and it achieved very good results, and that prompted many companies and organisations to advocate for the second convoy which has been organised in cooperation with strategic partners from local tourism associations in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ras al-Khaimah and Fujairah. 

Super-priority UK visa service in Abu Dhabi, Dubai

T he United Kingdom has started of-

fering offer a super-priority visa service at its application centres in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, according to a Gulf News report. According to the report, the new service, which costs Dh3,295 in addition to the regular visa fees, will allow applicants to receive their decision and documents within 24 hours. Regular visa fees vary according to the duration of stay, with visas for visits up to six months costing Dh474, two years costing Dh1,719 and five years costing Dh3,118.

26 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 |

The service allows applicants to apply for long-term, multi-entry visas, valid for up to ten years, and also long-term study and work visas. “I am delighted that we are launching the UK super-priority visa service in the UAE — one of only a handful of countries where we provide this service. This underlines our strong commitment to making our already excellent visa service even more flexible,” the report quoted Philip Parham, UK’s Ambassador to the UAE, as saying.

However, Emiratis will still be able to use the electronic visa waiver, which offers them visa-free travel if they register online at least 48 hours before their departure to the UK, for a visit up to six months. Those eligible for the new service should book the super-priority visa service appointment when making a visa application online. Appointments for the service will be available between 8am and 10am Sunday to Thursday at the visa application centres in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, added the report. 


www.alphatoursdubai.com

+971 4 701 9111 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 27


UAE News

Four new millionaires a day in UAE till Expo 2020 A new

report suggests that a surge in the UAE’s economy, boosted by the projects undertaken for the preparation of the prestigious Expo 2020, will create more than 7,700 new millionaires by 2019, according to Emirates247. According to a new report from WealthInsight, the millionaire’s club in the UAE stood at 50,595 by the end of 2014. The country is forecast to have 58,335 millionaires in five years’ time – a rise of 15 per cent over 2014, translating into 1,548 new millionaires minted every year, or 4.2 millionaires every day of

28 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 |

the year for the next 5 years, said the report.The Expo will indeed be a major event that is expected to benefit the economy and the UAE’s residents in all possible ways. The wealthy in the UAE have been growing consistently in numbers and this figure is expected to grow further from now until 2020. A previous Wealth-X and UBS World Ultra Wealth Report 2014, states that the UAE is ranked No. 22 in the world according to the number of multi-millionaires that live here, ahead of global heavyweights such as Russia, Argentina and Sweden.

The same report revealed there are a total of 1,275 multi-millionaires in the UAE, up from 1,050 last year. These individuals now hold a collective $255 billion in net wealth among them, up from $190 billion last year, reported the news website. The UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Qatar accounted for more significant proportions of millionaires than other Middle Eastern markets such as Iraq and Jordan. However, the millionaire population in Qatar is one of the fastest growing in the region, recording a review-period CAGR of 8.9 per cent between 2010 and 2014. 


|Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 29


International News

Germany witnesses sharpest immigration rise in years

T he

number of foreigners living in Germany grew at the fastest rate in more than two decades last year, the Statistics office said, according to a Reuters. Figures showed an increase of 519,340 people, or 6.8 percent, from a year earlier, many of them Syrians fleeing war and Romanians and Bulgarians seeking work -- marking a second year in a row of record immigration in Europe’s largest economy.

tion of the West), which held large rallies in the eastern city of Dresden late last year, said the report.

Concerns about immigration has increased support for right-wing parties, including the new Alternative for Germany (AfD), and grassroots movements such as PEGIDA (Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamisa-

“So far there have only been two years where the number of foreigners in Germany saw a stronger rise than in 2014 -- namely in 1992, by 613,500, and in 1991, by 539,800,” the report quoted the Statistics Of-

Mobile office for migrant workers in Singapore’s remote areas M igrant workers staying in remote industrial and hous-

ing areas will now have better access to the services offered by the Migrant Workers’ Centre (MWC), according to a report in Straits Times. The centre has launched a mobile office that will travel to areas such as Tuas, Sungei Kadut and Kranji to engage workers and help address some of their concerns including employment rights. The report said the launch of the mobile office marks a move towards reaching out to workers housed in illegal and makeshift dormitories that are not so wellrun.The centre has previously concentrated most of its efforts on purpose-built centres and dormitories which tend to have been developed by good employers. 

30 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 |

fice. The total number of foreigners registered by the end of 2014 was 8.2 million, the highest since records began in 1967, in a country of just over 80 million people whose population and workforce is aging and shrinking more than any major economy save Japan, the report added. 

Australia Vietnam sign work and holiday MoU

A ustralia and Vietnam signed a Work and Holiday Mem-

orandum of Understanding, establishing a reciprocal Work and Holiday visa (subclass 462) arrangement between our two countries. This arrangement will allow up to 200 young adults from Vietnam and up to 200 young adults from Australia to enjoy a holiday in each other’s country, during which they can undertake short term work and study, according to the Australia’s Department of Immigration and Border Protection website. When a commencement date has been announced, eligible young adults from Vietnam and Australia will be able to apply for this visa. In the coming months, Australia and Vietnam will work closely together to implement the necessary legal and administrative processes to bring this visa into effect. The work and holiday arrangement will not commence until a start date has been agreed by both countries. 


International News

Australia plans to issue 5 million visas in 2015 A ustralia is planning to issue more

than 5 million visas this year, for the first ever time, according to a report in the Sydney Morning Herald. Surging numbers of students, tourists and workers on short-term visas mean that as many as 1.9 million foreigners are likely to be in the country at any one time over the course of 2015, the report quoted Michael Pezzullo, Secretary of the Department of Immigration, as saying.The number of traditional permanent migrants is also surging, with this year’s intake likely to surpass the existing record of 185,000, which was set in 1969, said the report.

decades. Those born in India has risen more than four-fold in that time, to almost 400,000. Those numbers compare to about 1.2 million born in Britain and more than 600,000 in New Zealand, as part of an overall foreign-born population of 6.6 million, the report added.

Pezzulo pointed to a rapid shift in the ethnic composition of new migrants away from Europe towards east and southern Asia, it added..

The huge influx means a higher proportion of the population was born overseas than at any time since the gold rushes of the 19th century. He also noted a profound shift towards The number of Chinese-born Aus- skilled migrants, which was caretralians has more than tripled to al- fully targeted to meet the nation’s most 450,000 in the space of two economic needs.

”If a nation’s immigration programme is well crafted and targeted, and migrants enjoy high levels of economic participation, as distinct from high levels of social exclusion and welfaredependency, immigration has beneficial impacts in terms of growth in the demand for goods and services; increases in national income, and living standards; improved labour participation; expansion of the economy’s productive capacity; and growth in household consumption and public revenues,” the report quoted him as saying. 

New Zealand migration hits new record N ew Zealand migration hit a new annual record in March, as more students arrived from India and China and fewer locals left for Australia, reported The New Zealand Herald.

Quoting the Statistics New Zealand, the report said the country had a net gain of 56,275 migrants

in the year through March, 75 per cent higher than the 31,914 gain in the year earlier period. Migrant arrivals were 16 per cent ahead of the year earlier period, while departures declined 13 per cent, it added. According to the report, New Zealand annual migration has broken

records for an eighth consecutive month as the nation’s economic prospects appear brighter than in many other countries. That’s helping stoke economic activity, pushing up demand for housing and cars while also reducing pressure on wage inflation by boosting the supply of labour.  |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 31


Middle East News

KSA to issue online visit visas for expat families T he Interior Ministry will soon issue

visas online for families of expats without the need to visit the Passport Department or the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Arab News reported. Quoting a source, the newspaper said the move would save time and prevent overcrowding at visa offices for expatriates wanting to bring their families on visits as well as save them from attaching several documents along with their visa applications. The ministry had earlier launched a pilot programme to test the system prior to its launch. Giving visas

online will also improve the department’s performance and save expatriates’ time and effort, the report said. However, applicants must enter their data correctly and exactly as it appears in the civil registry and on their residence permits. The data of their family members must also be exactly filled as it appears in their passports Applicants should need to undertake to provide appropriate housing for their family members, medical insurance and ensure their departure before the expiry of the visa period. They should also un-

dertake that their visitors follow all the laws and regulations of the Kingdom during their stay. Applicants must also clearly specify that the purpose of the visit is to meet the family and not perform Haj or Umrah. There would be penalties for those failing to comply, the report added. Meanwhile, the ministry will start from Sunday to allow the public to make appointments electronically for services provided by the Department of Recruitment Affairs. These services are available at www.moi.gov.sa under the recruitment icon. 

DOHA to have single counter for MoI services D oha will soon have a single counter

at government services centres for all visa and related services, according to a report in The Peninsula. Currently, there are 19 services centres across the country, and they have separate counters for different services. These services include issuance and renewal of different types of visas, ID cards and residency permit (RP), among other things, the report said. “We are gradually working to make sure that a visitor goes to a single counter at a services centre and gets his work done. The system of separate counters for different services will be removed,” the report quoted Brigadier Abdullah Ahmed Al An-

32 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 |

sari , head of the Unified Services Department which runs the 19 services centres.The service centres issue different types of entry and stay visas, including work, business and tourist, family and visit.

They renew visas as well as transfer and cancel RPs. They also issue ID cards for expatriates and exit permits, including to under-age nationals and wives of Qataris, added the report. 


|Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 33


Special Study

A Fair Deal When it comes to civil and criminal justice, regulatory enforcement, absence of corruption and public order and security, the UAE stands out. A global study of 99 countries acknowledges the distinction.

3434|Manafez |Manafez Dubai Dubai |May |May 2015 2015 ||


Special

The UAE has been ranked ahead of several developed countries, including the US, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and France, in a global ranking of 100 countries in several dimensions of the rule of law. The Rule of Law Index 2014 by The World Justice Project has given UAE 27th slot in the global ranking – the highest enjoyed by any country in the Middle East and the Arab world. The Index is the world’s most comprehensive data set of its kind and the only to rely solely on primary data, measuring a nation’s adherence to the rule of law from the perspective of how ordinary people experience it. The WJP Rule of Law Index 2014 is the fourth report in an annual series.

Study

The study noted: “The rule of law affects all of us in our everyday lives. It is not only important to lawyers and judges; every person is a stakeholder in the rule of law. Although we may not be aware of it, the rule of law is a profoundly important part of our lives. It is the foundation for a system of rules to keep us safe, resolve disputes, and enable us to prosper.” William H. Neukom, Founder and CEO of Washingtonbased The World Justice Project (WJP), said: “The rule of law is the foundation for communities of opportunity and equity—it is the predicate for the eradication of poverty, violence, corruption, pandemics, and other threats to civil society.” The WJP is an independent, multidisciplinary organization working to advance the rule of law around the world.

|Manafez |ManafezDubai Dubai||May May 2015 | 35


Special Study

Its Index is a quantitative measurement tool that offers a comprehensive picture of the rule of law in practice. The Index presents a portrait of the rule of law in each country through a set of 47 indicators organized around nine themes: constraints on government powers; absence of corruption; open government; fundamental rights; order and security; regulatory enforcement; civil justice; criminal justice; and informal justice. The country scores and rankings include the latest data collected and processed by the WJP, based on more than 100,000 household and expert surveys in 99 countries and jurisdictions. The Index report has been made possible by ‘generous’ support of several organizations including American Bar Association (ABA); Apple Inc.; The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation; The Boeing Company; Carnegie Corporation of New York; City of The Hague; Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation; Ford Foundation; GE Foundation; General Electric; Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation; Hewlett-Packard; Intel Corporation; Irish Aid; Johnson & Johnson; McKinsey; Merck; Microsoft Corporation; Oak Foundation; Pepsi; United States Chamber of Commerce; US Department of State; Viacom International and Wal-Mart.

MENA scenario

The report observed: “The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region as a whole ranks in the top half of the world in most categories, including order and security, control of corruption, effective regulatory enforcement, civil and criminal justice. The strongest overall rule of law performer in the region is the United Arab Emirates, ranking 27th globally. The weakest are Egypt and Iran, ranking 74th and 82nd among the 99 countries included in the Index. Mo36 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 |

The stongest overall rule of law performer in the region is the UAE

rocco showed the most improvement in the region during the past year while Iran deteriorated the most.”

UAE leads the region

The study noted: “The United Arab Emirates ranks 27th overall and it leads the region in several dimensions of the rule of law. Public institutions in the country are relatively well developed and free of corruption (ranking 17th globally), and government officers are held accountable for misconduct. The country is safe from crime and violence (ranking 9th in the world) and the court system is efficient and relatively independent by regional standards.” It pointed out the areas of attention for the government and authorities for further improvement. The Index had on its ranking other MENA countries – Egypt, Iran, Lebanon, Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia and the UAE was chosen as the GCC representative country given its excellent and extensive socioeconomic development which made it the Arab world’s second biggest economy in less than four decades since the formation of UAE as a federation in 1971.

Absence of corruption

Referring to absence of corruption – bribery, improper influence by public and private interests and appropriation of public funds and other resources (embezzlement), the Index gave the UAE 17th global ranking, ahead of the US (21st) but just below Canada (14) UK (15th) and Korea (16th). The report stated: “The absence of corruption – conventionally defined as the

use of public power for private gain – is one of the hallmarks of a society governed by the rule of law, as corruption is a manifestation of the extent to which the government officials abuse their power for their own interest. Corruption can take many forms, including bribery, nepotism, extortion, fraud, embezzlement, and involvement of organized crime.” It added: “Corruption is costly for society: it siphons off scarce resources, introduce inefficiencies and inequities in public service delivery, lowers regulatory compliance, weakens accountability, curtails the public’s opportunities for participation, undermines the government’s credibility, and leads to injustice.” “Addressing corruption is a complicated political endeavor requiring creative thinking and a coordinated effort by numerous stakeholders, including government, businesses, academia, and the civil society at large.”

Public Order and Security

The report said: “Human security is one of the defining aspects of any rule of law society and a fundamental function of the state. Not only does violence inflict direct harms on society, it also prevents the achievement of such goals as fundamental human rights, and access to justice. It leads to instability and undermines trust and confidence in state institutions. In extreme situations, violence might become the norm if legal rules are not enforced.” The Index measured the absence of three forms of violence: crime —particularly conventional crimes such as homicide, kidnapping, burglary, armed robbery, extortion, and fraud; political violence, including terrorism, armed conflict and political unrest and violence as a means to redress personal


Special

grievances, which results from the loss of confidence in the police and criminal justice system. “Whatever the cause of violence may be, its effect on people can be devastating. That is why the rule of law necessitates that the state be effective at preventing crime and violence of every kind,” it observed. In the Order and Security category, the Index placed the UAE on the 9th position, one level below Finland, but above Austria (10th), New Zealand (11th), Australia (14th), Canada (15th), US (18th) and UK (23rd).

Regulatory Enforcement

The report said modern societies use enforcement of government regulations to ensure that the public interest is not subordinated to the private interests of regulated entities. Around the world, regulations vary widely due to differences in policies, institutional environments, and political choices. Ensuring compliance with regulations is thus a key feature of the rule of law.

UAE is 9th in the order and security category mental standards, public health, workplace safety regulations, and permits and licenses. This factor also addresses whether the government respects the property rights of people and corporations; refrains from the illegal seizure of private property without adequate compensation; and provides adequate compensation when property is legally expropriated. As countries engage in regulatory reforms, special efforts should be made to improve the mechanisms used to guarantee that such laws are implemented and enforced in an efficient, effective and accountable manner. In this category, the UAE ranked 23rd, just one level below the US (22nd) and above Czech Republic (24th), Spain (25th) and Poland (26th).

systems preserve peace and contribute to cultures of personal accountability. The delivery of effective civil justice requires that the system be accessible and affordable, as well as free of discrimination, corruption and improper influence by public officials,” it observed. In assessment countries under this domain, the Index has given 33rd ranking to the UAE, well above countries like Italy Malaysia, South Africa and Turkey.

Criminal Justice

An effective criminal justice system is a key aspect of the rule of law. Effective criminal justice systems are capable of investigating, prosecuting, adjudicating, and punishing criminal offenses successfully, reliably, and in a timely manner through a system that is impartial and nondiscriminatory, as well as free of corruption and improper government influence. 

Civil Justice

The Index assessed the effectiveness of regulatory enforcement in practice; the presence or absence of improper influence of public officials or private interests, the timelines of administrative proceedings and the level of adherence to due process of law in administrative procedures.

In a rule of law society, ordinary people should be able to resolve their grievances and obtain remedies through formal institutions of justice in a peaceful and effective manner, rather than resorting to violence or self-help. Well- functioning civil justice systems enable people to protect their rights against infringement by others, including powerful parties and the state.

The Index explored the outcomes associated with activities that are regulated in all jurisdictions, such as environ-

“As an essential component of a society where the rule of law thrives, effective civil justice

Effective regulatory enforcement depends, in turn, on accountability, independence, and transparency to ensure that regulatory institutions act within the limits authorized by law.

Study

|Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 37


New Technology

Password, a bygone era?

Windows to introduce biometric sign-in option M icrosoft recently announced that it will introduce an

automatic biometric sign-in option with its Windows 10 operating system later this year.

Windows 10 would support the next version of the Fast Identification Online (FIDO) spec, allowing devices to work with biometric readers and making computing more personal and secure. Once it comes into place, it would mean you would be able to log in to your computing device using your eyes, finger scan or face recognition. The need for stronger authentication is driving organizations to come out with alternatives and the era of passwords, which have been a primary method for people to protect their personal information, is set to be history soon.

Microsoft’s “real focus” on biometrics, with Windows Hello and Passport, promises to make computing more personal and secure need for signatures or PINs for credit and debit card transactions. Jonathan LeBlanc, global head of developer advocacy at PayPal, says external body methods like fingerprints are “antiquated”, and that internal body functions like heartbeat and vein recognition using embedded and ingestible devices are the future, to allow “natural

Halifax, a financial services provider in the UK, has been recently reported to be testing a new biometric technology to allow customers to verify their identity through their heartbeat.

body identification”, according to Techworld.

The new form of verification, if successful, could eliminate the

PayPal is also reported to be working with partners to build

3838|Manafez |Manafez Dubai Dubai |May |May 2015 2015 ||

vein recognition technologies as well as heartbeat recognition bands similar to the Halifax, said Techworld. The call to kill passwords has been on for some time now due to the inconvenience and security issues. Traditional passwords are easily hackable and have led to incidents such as the hacking of 1.2 billion usernames and passwords belonging to more than 500 million email addresses reported in August 2014; eBay’s security breach that affected 145 million users last year, Home Depots payment system suffering a security breach exposing customers’ payment cards at risk, and many more. The FIDO Alliance, an industry consortium officially launched over 2 years ago, has been working toward addressing the lack of interoperability among strong authentication devices and the problems users face creating and remem-


New Technology

Whether it is Windows Hello or touch ID fingerprint detection, the days of passwords seem to be numbered bering multiple usernames and passwords. While Paypal and Lenovo are among the founders, its other members include Google, Blackberry, MasterCard, Microsoft and Visa, among others. Microsoft’s “real focus” on biometrics, with Windows Hello and Passport, promises to make computing more personal and secure. In its blog, Windows shared that is working closely with its hardware partners to deliver Windows Hello capable devices that will ship with Windows 10. All OEM systems incorporating the Intel® RealSense™ 3D Camera (F200) will support the facial unlock features of Windows Hello, including automatic sign-in to Windows, and support to unlock “Passport” without the need for a PIN, it said. “Passport is a code name for a programming system that IT managers, software developers and website authors can use to provide a more secure way of letting you sign-in to their sites or apps. Instead of using a shared or shareable secret like a password, Windows 10 helps to securely authenticate to applications, websites and networks on your behalf—without sending up a password.

Windows is also working with hardware manufacturers for support.

Thus, there is no shared password stored on their servers for a hacker to potentially compromise,” it explained on the blog. A user’s iris or face, hence, will not be stored on the laptop, thereby, enhancing security. All Windows 10 will ask a user will be to verify his possession of the device before authenticating on the user’s behalf, with a PIN or Windows Hello on devices with biometric sensors. “Once authenticated with “Passport”, you will be able to instantly access a growing set of websites and services across a range of industries – favorite commerce sites, email and social networking services, financial institutions, business networks and more.”

“Passport” also will work with thousands of enterprise Azure Active Directory services at launch, and Microsoft has joined the FIDO alliance to support replacing passwords with a growing set of financial, consumer, and other security services over time, it said. Windows 10 will also have industry-leading security and identity protection for enterprises, so they can deploy new Windows 10 devices with hardware necessary to use Windows Hello, enabling enterprisegrade protection of the device and more secure password-free authentication to enterprise line of business applications, it added. Whether it is Windows Hello or touch ID fingerprint detection, the days of passwords seem to be numbered.  |Manafez |ManafezDubai Dubai||May May 2015 | 39


Special Study

Fewer people in the world need paper visa now

F

ewer people around the world now need traditional visas prior to departure thanks to the strong progress in visa facilitation in recent years. Only 62 per cent of the world’s population was required to have a traditional visa before departure in 2015 compared to 77 per cent in 2008, according to a UN World Tourism Organisation report.

From a few decades ago, when travel was heavily impacted by limitations, formalities and regulations, visa policies have undergone a transformation and an increasing number of countries are facilitating visa processes. The report, titled ‘Visa Openness Report’, said the strong progress in facilitation has happened particularly through the implementation of visa on arrival policies. This reflects an increased awareness among policymakers of the positive impacts of visa facilitation on tourism and economic growth. Especially noteworthy are the multilateral agreements that mutually exempt all or certain categories of

40 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 |

62 per cent people needed traditional visa in 2014, says UNWTO report travellers from the visa requirement. Last year, 19 per cent of the world’s population was able to enter a destination without a visa, while 16 per cent could receive a visa on arrival, as compared to 17 and 6 per cent in 2008. The report showed that more than half of all improvements made in the last four years were from “visa required” to “visa on arrival”.

“Visa facilitation is central to stimulating economic growth and job creation through tourism. Although there is much room for improvement, we are pleased to see that a growing number of governments around the world is taking decisive steps in this regard”, said UNWTO SecretaryGeneral, Taleb Rifai. According to the UNWTO report, as many as 50 destinations significantly facilitated the visa process for citizens of 30 or more countries between 2010 and 2014, by changing their visa policies from “visa required” to either “eVisa”, “visa on arrival” or “no visa required”.


Special

Countries in the Americas and in Asia and the Pacific have been at the forefront of visa facilitation. It observed emerging economies tend to be more open than advanced ones, with SouthEast Asia, East Africa, the Caribbean and Oceania among the most open subregions.

Tourism

The cost of obtaining a visa – either the direct monetary cost imposed in the form of fees or the indirect costs, which can include distance, time spent waiting in lines, and the complexity of the process – exceeds a threshold, potential travellers are simply deterred from making a particular journey or choose an alternative destination with less hassle. “It is interesting in this context to note that, in 1963, the delegates of 87 States agreed, at the United Nations Conference on International Travel and Tourism in Rome, that “Governments should extend to the maximum number of countries the practice of abolishing, through bilateral agreements or by unilateral decision, the requirement of entry visas for temporary visitors,” the report stated.

More countries facilitating visa processes

Visa policies can greatly enhance tourism as these are among the most important governmental formalities influencing international tourism. The report noted that there has been a swift growth of international tourism in the last six decades, the quality, reliability, and functionality of visas and other travel documents has evolved. Over the past six decades, tourism has continued to expand and diversify; it is now one of the largest and fastest-growing economic sectors in the world. Many new tourist destinations have emerged alongside the traditional ones of Europe and North America. From 1980 to 2013, international tourist arrivals (i.e., overnight visitors) more than tripled worldwide, leaping from 279 million in 1980 to 1,087 million in 2013, corresponding to an average growth of 4.2 per cent a year.

Study

According to the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) long-term forecast Tourism Towards 2030, international tourist arrivals are expected to continue to grow at the sustained pace of 3.3% a year on average, reaching 1.8 billion by 2030. “UNWTO forecasts international tourist arrivals to reach 1.8 billion by 2030, and easier visa procedures will be crucial to attract these travellers, especially tourists from emerging source markets like China, Russia, India and Brazil”, added Rifai. Joint research by the UNWTO and the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC), presented to the 4th T20 Ministers’ Meeting in May 2012, demonstrates that improving visa processes could generate an additional US$ 206 billion in tourism receipts and create as many as 5.1 million jobs by 2015 in the G20 economies. Further research prepared by UNWTO and the WTTC for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) High Level Policy Dialogue on Travel Facilitation in October 2013 revealed that policy improvements across APEC economies could generate up to US$ 89 billion in international tourism receipts and between 1.0 and 1.4 million new jobs. Both analyses also identified five key areas of opportunity for visa facilitation. Improving the delivery of information could be a major opportunity, it said. Also, improving the way visa requests for temporary visitors are processed in general, as well as the requirements linked to this process; facilitating visas for different types of visitors. It recommended that eVisa should be preferred over tradition paper visa in cases where entry visa cannot be avoided.  |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 41


In Focus

Airbus Concept Plane

Airbus presents vision for ‘Smarter Skies’

Panoramic view of future travel 42 42|Manafez |Manafez Dubai Dubai |May |May 2015 2015 ||


A

ir passengers are set to witness major transformation in travel experience as airports, airplane manufacturers and aviation industry actively works toward combating the challenges of multifold rise in air traffic and emissions. In future, air travel is promised to not only be hassle free, but also an experience you’d cherish. Unveiling its 2050 vision for ‘Smarter Skies’ at ‘The Future of Borders 2015’ held in Dubai, Airbus showed blueprints for radical changes in aircraft and cabin designs. Paul Moultrie, Head of Marketing at Airbus Middle East, said through innovation, and out-of-the-box thinking, Airbus will continue to meet its eco-efficiency goals, and ensure that air travel continues to be one of the safest, and most ecoefficient, means of transportation. Future-gazing by Airbus created radical blueprints for concept planes and aircraft interiors.. Among the much talked about futuristic concepts by Airbus is The Airbus ‘Concept Plane’. It’s not a plane that will fly, but it stretches the imagination of engineers, it highlights some of the challenges and decisions that lie ahead for air travel.

In

The futuristic aircraft will help meet the ever-evolving demands and aspirations of hyper-mobile air passengers whose number is projected to reach 10 billion by the year 2050, up from the current three billion. By 2050, 70 per cent of the world’s population will live in cities or towns and more of them will want and need to travel, says Airbus. The aircraft has lace-like structure and takes inspiration from the human skeleton. The design is both strong and relatively lightweight. The wings will bend and move, instead of using flaps. Longer and slimmer the wings will better glide through the skies, as the flow of air over the wing surface reduces drag and in turn, improves fuel efficiency.

In future, air travel is promised to not only be hassle free, but also an experience you’d cherish

A bionic structure and biopolymer membrane will make the aircraft lighter and more fuel-efficient, create the perfect combination of strength, light and space, but most importantly offer panoramic views of the world outside through large areas where the lining can become transparent at the wave of a hand. Inside the aircraft, you should not expect the traditional cabin classes. The ‘Airbus Concept Cabin’ is inspired by nature - and designed to protect it - aircraft cabins of the future will be customised to the needs of individual passengers.

Focus

The Concept Cabin doesn’t conform to the traditional cabin classes found in today’s commercial aircraft. First, Business and Economy class are replaced by zones that target more individual needs like relaxing, playing games, interacting with other passengers or holding business meetings with people on the ground. The cabin’s bionic structure and responsive membrane combines panoramic views with an integrated neural network pulsing through it, which can identify and respond to the specific needs of each passenger. And the fittings and furnishings will take care of their own cleaning and repairs thanks to innovations inspired by nature, like dirt repellent coatings and self healing covers. Airbus engineers talk of morphing seats made from ecological, selfcleaning materials which change shape for a snug fit; walls that become see-through at the touch of a button, affording 360-degree views of the world below; and holographic projections of virtual decors, allowing travellers to transform their private cabin into an office, bedroom or even a “zen garden.” By offering different levels of experience within each zone, airlines would be able to achieve the price differential they need to operate a successful business, give more people access to the benefits of air travel and still look after the environment. Each and every passenger can now enjoy their own very unique flying experience, says Airbus.  |Manafez |ManafezDubai Dubai||May May 2015 | 43


Retail

& Hospitality

Green choices for Dubai shoppers

Dubai Municipality to launch ‘ Dubai Green Malls’ programme

T

he Dubai Municipality will be launching the Dubai Green Malls programme for a more ecofriendly environment in shopping mall complexes. The Dubai Green Malls programme will be based on the voluntary participation of any individual retail outlet. The programme has been developed along the same lines as the international voluntary scheme known as Green Key Programme which was initially launched by the Foundation for Environmental Education for accommodation and leisure, the civic body said in a press release. The Dubai Municipality’s first aim is to support retail outlets existing in Dubai to achieve environmental sustainability. By doing so, they will support these outlets in many areas of their operating areas such as waste, energy and water management.The second aim the municipality aspires to accomplish through the programme is raising awareness among residents and expats in Dubai. In addition to supporting retail outlets in achieving long-term environmental sustainability, the green malls will act as centres to promote environmental awareness and sustainable living in the emirate of Dubai. Additionally, the green malls will encourage the public to pursue greener choices while shopping. Through the programme, not only will malls publically demonstrate 44 |Manafez Dubai |May 2015 |

Japan’s Namba Parks has an eight level rooftop garden that spans several city blocks and features tree groves, rock clusters, cliffs and canyons, lawns, streams, waterfalls, ponds and even space to grow veggies.

their practices in achieving long-term sustainability, they will assist the government of Dubai in reaching the wider public with the intended message.Green malls will play a role in environmental education to inform the public about protecting natural resources, reducing energy and water consumption, reducing greenhouse gases, reusing, recycling and reducing waste generation while engaging in shopping activities. The Dubai Municipality said it aims to establish strong partnerships between both private and government entities and mall owners and management in an effort to make malls more eco-friendly and public centres for promoting environmental awareness. 


Dubai hotels welcome 11.6 million guests

D

Retail

& Hospitality

ubai hotels welcomed more than 11 million guests in 2014, an increase of 5.6 per cent over previous year, according to reports.

The emirate also showed steady year-on-year growth and significant increases across key indicators including hotel establishment revenues and guest nights, while also growing its portfolio of hotels and hotel apartment establishments, according to Trade Arabia report. Dubai’s top ten hotel guest source markets in 2014 remained almost entirely unchanged from 2013, with Saudi Arabia as the top source market, followed by India, UK, US, Iran, Oman, China, Kuwait, Russia and Germany. China moved from 10th position to seventh, experiencing 24.9 per cent growth in the last 12 months with 344,329 hotel guests com-

Dubai is among world’s most popular tourist destinations pared to 275,675 in 2013.India and the UK also showed significant increases in the number of hotel guests, rising 12.2 per cent and 11.3 per cent respectively. Helal Saeed Almarri, director general of DTCM, said: “The 2014 figures demonstrate healthy yearon-year growth for hotel establishment guest numbers with significant increases from Asia, Africa and Western Europe. The strong growth in hotel guests from China is hugely positive

and reflects our targeted work in this market. For example, in April 2014 tourism industry partners from across the emirate collaborated closely to host the largest ever delegate group from China with the NuSkin conference bringing more than 14,500 Chinese visitors to Dubai over a three week period. Such events, as well as our hosting of the largest ever tourism industry fam trip from India in December 2014 and steps taken to leverage the exemption of pre-entry visas for all European Union member states, are crucial to further strengthen ties with key markets and ensure that Dubai is positioned as a destination of choice for both new travellers and repeat visitors.” 

|Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 45


opinion column

Australia's strong focus on border management T oday I would like to discuss Australia’s approach to border management. Australia has always had a strong focus on border management.

Australia’s approach, going back to the mid-1980s, was to try to deal with as many of these issues as possible before a traveller arrived at our border.

John Moorhouse, Regional Director, Middle East and Africa, Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection

The key elements of this approach included introduction of electronic visas in 1988, creating Visa and Passport Databases, electronic alert lists, and most importantly, creating a computer system that linked up all these parts. The initiatives provided a platform, which gave us the ability to work on further innovations. This included our Advance Passenger Processing system or APP. APP, together with our visa system, allowed Australia to develop what we called our “layered approach to border management”. Over time, the checks conducted at each of the “layers” have grown more sophisticated, allowing us to identify issues earlier.

Unlike many other countries, 9/11 did not change Australia’s approach to border management. Some of the key features of our approach since 2001 have included further expanding electronic applications and processing for visas, introducing biometric capture and checking in, recording of biometric data in our visa and passport databases and improving (Excerpts from speech at ‘The Future of Borders 2015’ conference in Dubai data matching and alert screening on March 11, 2015. processes. 46 46 46|Manafez |Manafez |Manafez Dubai Dubai Dubai |September |May |May2015 2015|٢٠١٤ | |

As we move forward, technology is giving us more and more tools that will assist us to deliver streamlined border management processes. However, if there is a key message I could draw from Australia’s experience in developing border management initiatives it is that successful and sustainable facilitation initiatives must be based on a foundation that addresses security. Camouflaged within the growth of legitimate trade and travel, which we all welcome, are the threats posed by sophisticated and well-funded transnational organised crime. Additionally, in a global security paradigm where we face the threat of terrorism right around the world. Australian Government’s view is that effective management of our border is critical to protecting: our sovereignty; our community’s welfare; and our national security. Our Secretary, Michael Pezzullo, has made it clear that he sees effective border management being about having the right infrastructure, the right processes and the right partnerships to ensure that we support legitimate trade and travel by ensuring a stable, secure border. We are committed to providing an experience which is fast and seamless, where legitimate travellers can move quickly beyond the traditional border management lines and into the arms of their family and friends in the arrivals hall. 


opinion column

Immigration has crucial role in Canada's future are committed to welcoming W enewcomers to Canada. That’s what

we’re here to celebrate today – not just permanent residents, but all newcomers to Canada, from tourists, from people visiting family, to business visitors, students, temporary workers, and students on working holidays. Immigration has shaped the Canada we know today and it will continue to play a crucial role in our country’s future, ensuring our economic future, ensuring that the diversity of which we are so proud continues to deepen and broaden. As with other countries with aging populations and low birth rates, we know that Canada will have to rely increasingly on immigration to meet our economic and labour market needs, to ensure the jobs, growth and long term prosperity of the future. There’s no question in anyone’s mind that Canada needs skilled immigrants. But we must also ensure that the skilled workers we select have the right education and experience for our labour market, so they can begin working in Canada soon after they arrive. As we continue to admit high numbers of economic immigrants, our government has also been focused on how we can better meet labour market needs through immigration. We’ve made a number of changes, especially in the last five or six years,

to bring more speed and flexibility to our immigration system, to ensure our policies and programs are better aligned with Canada’s current and future economic needs. Express Entry is a new approach to managing and processing applications in our existing economic immigration programs. Express Entry, as these newcomers know, is not a new program. They’re benefiting from programs that existed long before January 2015. It’s a new way of delivering those programs and it’s a tremendous improvement on the old immigration system.

Chris Alexander, Canada’s Citizenship and Immigration Minister

I’m proud to say that Express Entry, with the results we’re demonstrating today, is the largest-scale, fastest most effective online pathway for economic immigration, certainly that Canada has ever had and that, I think, any country has at the moment in the world today. That’s good for the Canadian economy. It’s certainly good for newcomers. It’s certainly good for the employers that are looking to attract global talent. Essentially, our new Express Entry system will enable us to better select immigrants based on the skills and attributes that Canada’s economy currently needs and those who have the greatest potential to succeed. Express Entry is here to underpin the long-term viability of our immigration system which, of course, is itself driven by the prosperity, by the strength of the Canadian economy. 

((Excerpts from speech at a News Conference to announce the first Permanent Residents under Express Entry)

|Manafez Dubai |May 2015 | 47

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