Important updates relevant to residents…

Each year, the UAE makes significant changes to its laws to make it easier for residents to enjoy life in Dubai. From paid parking in Dubai Mall to a complete ban on single-use plastic bags, here are three new rules introduced in the UAE in 2024 that you should know about:

Update to Golden Visa requirements

Dubai has cancelled the Dhs1 million down-payment previously required for people to qualify for the 10-year Golden Visa (through property investment). For buyers to be eligible for the Golden Visa, the property value must now be over Dhs2 million. Previously, property investors would have to put down a minimum payment of Dhs1 million. This is huge news for buyers and means that the majority of property investors in Dubai will now qualify for that special 10-year golden residency.

E-scooters banned on public transport

Effective from March 1, the RTA announced that the use and carrying of e-scooters is banned on the Dubai metro and tram services. In the Tweet, the RTA stated that the ban has come in to ensure the safety of those using public transport. While the ban has been enforced on the metro and tram systems, there has been no indication if e-scooters have been banned on bus services.

Ban on single-use plastic bags

Effective from January 1, you will not be able to import or purchase single-use plastic bags across Dubai. There are a few exceptions, which include thin-film rolls for packaging meat, fish, vegetables, fruits, grains, and bread. Garbage bags are also exempt from the ban. Announced by HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, it’s part of a city-wide initiative to totally phase out single-use products, as the emirate looks to go greener. From June 1, 2024, non-plastic single-use products will be banned across Dubai, including single-use bags of other materials. In the first phase of the ban, just covering single-use plastic bags, any non-compliance will result in a fine of Dhs200. In Abu Dhabi, a single-use plastic bag ban has been in effect since June 2022, however, from June 1, 2024, single-use Styrofoam products and single-use food container receptacles will be banned in the capital. 

Paid parking in Dubai Mall

Salik in cooperation with Emaar Malls announced that parking at one of the biggest malls in the world will soon become a paid service. The payment will include a barrier-free system which will be put in place by Salik. The process will be automated and customers will be charged using vehicle plate recognition. The payment will be deducted directly from the customer’s Salik user account – the same way it works when you pass the tolls. It is expected to be rolled out in the third quarter of 2024. The price is yet to be announced, so stay tuned to What’s On for updates.

UAE raffles and prize draws put on hold

UAE’s popular lucky draw Mahzooz has announced a temporary pause on operations. The popular prize draw has created 64 millionaires and given away more than half a billion dirhams to around 1.8 million winners. But as of January 1, 2024 –  the draws have been put on, what the brand stated on its website that “in compliance with applicable commercial gaming regulations, Mahzooz will temporarily pause operations from January 1st, 2024. The pause is a result of an industry-wide mandate consistent with the Regulators’ new role to create a well-regulated gaming environment in the United Arab Emirates.”

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