The reduced fees will be rolled out across 145 services and 128 transactions…

Fees for work permits provided by the UAE’s ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MOHRE) are set to be reduced by up to 94 per cent, the ministry has confirmed. The move comes in a bid to support business owners in the UAE, an official Tweet read.

The ministry confirmed it has started enforcing the reduced fees for 145 services and 128 transactions. Of those, 17 fees have been cut by between 50 per cent and 94 per cent.

So, what does this mean for businesses?

For many businesses, the new fee structure will make getting work permits more affordable. The revised fee structure is linked to the new classification system of companies, devised based on the skill level of workers.

There are three categories: First, second and third, with the secondary category then split into levels A, B, C, and D.

While some fees have been reduced depending on category, some have been reduced for all categories

Below is a list of all the work permit fees that have been cut in half for all categories:

The table below shows how work permit fees for two year permits and two year renewals have changed depending on business category and skill classification.

What’s the difference between skilled and limited skilled labour?

The classification of skilled vs unskilled is based on the profession that one holds, which is dependent on the person holding an attested educational qualification certificate.

It’s worth noting that work permit fees for limited skilled labour employees remain unchanged. However, fees are cut in half across all categories for two-year work permit issuance and renewal for skilled labour.

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The fees for a two-year work permit for those sponsored by parents is being set to a flat fee of Dhs300 across all business categories, and is no longer different for skilled or limited skilled labour.

This is a huge reduction for businesses in the third category, who would previously have to have paid a Dhs5000 fee for limited skilled labour two-year work permit for an employee sponsored by their parents.

An employee transfer permit issued when an employee transfers from one workplace to another will also see a reduced fee put in place – but only for skilled labour. The fee for skilled labour workers will be cut in half, while work permits for limited skilled employees remain the same.

The MOHRE also said that companies employing an Emirati or GCC National will continue to be exempt from paying the work permit fee.

According to Nasser bin Thani Al Hameli, minister of Human Resources and Emiratisation, the reduced fees will “enhance the flexibility of the labour market” and meet the needs of private sector businesses.

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Images: MOHRE Twitter/ Getty