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Thu 7 Feb 2013 10:56 AM

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Over 38,000 leave UAE in visa amnesty

Two-thirds of those who applied for amnesty have been allowed to leave country

Over 38,000 leave UAE in visa amnesty

Over 38,000 illegal workers have left the UAE, authorities confirmed following the end of the 60-day amnesty.

Of the 61, 826 overseas nationals to apply for the amnesty, 38,505 have left the country, major general Nasser Al Awadi Al Menhali, assistant undersecretary of the Ministry of Interior for Naturalisation, Residency and Ports Affairs said in comments published by the state news agency WAM.

While fines were waivered for those that left the country, 1,000 people have been fined since the end of the amnesty on February14, he added.

The amnesty – the fourth in the UAE – allowed those working without valid visas to either apply to renew their visa or leave the country without penalty.

Expatriate workers make up about 80 percent of the UAE’s population of 8m.

Overstaying a residence visa usually incurs a fine of AED25 (US$7) per day, which must be paid before being allowed to leave the country.