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Thu 31 Jan 2013 11:56 AM

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UAE's Emirates ID card gets new name

Identity card to be rebranded as Resident Identity Card; no need to re-apply

UAE's Emirates ID card gets new name

The name of the the UAE's Emirates ID card will be changed to Resident Identity card for all non-UAE citizens from February, the Gulf state's Emirates Identity Authority (EIDA) said.

The cards, currently called Identity Cards for expat and Emiratis, will be changed in line with recommendations from the Federal National Council, which requested authorities distinguish between foreigners and UAE citizens.

Expats already in possession of Emirates ID cards will not need to replace them until they have expired, said EIDA.

EIDA faced an uphill struggle in convincing UAE residents to sign up for mandatory identification cards, despite announcing a series of deadlines for applications.

The scheme, which began in 2005, was designed to integrate information from labour cards, visas and other ID documents, and to make government transactions easier.

Each card contains the holder’s address, photo, date of birth and fingerprints, and can be used as an official source of identification in the Gulf state.

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Dubai Diary 7 years ago

Its just to show the expats that they are workers here and have limited self-respect!!! The equality part is over more than a decade back in the UAE.

Omar is back 7 years ago

There is no equality between an Alien resident and a citizen in any country on earth - Yes, residents rights vary between a country and another but overall UAE is NOT bad at all, although this decision represents an unfortunate set back!!! UAE has clear rules- they don't grant citizenship and this should simply be understood!!!Even in Europe laws defer, some grant after 7 years of residency, others after 13 amd others after 20 years!!!!Yes, i am against the loose Canadian citizenship system that many Asians residing in UAE love who get the Canadian passport after 4-6 years without knowing basic things about Canada!!!People coming to UAE must know once for all that they are temporary Alien Residents!!! Is it that hard??!!!Many don't want to understand bcz they wish they could become UAE citizens to get the locals' benefits-Unfortunately, this is NOT possible!!!!C'est la vie!!!

Burhan 7 years ago

No expat guest was fooled. All expat guests knew all along that they came here to work and build a future, not to become citizens or permanent settlers. Anyone who thinks the Arabian Gulf countries will become migration countries are highly mistaken and are living in a fool's paradise and deluding themselves with vain hopes and wishes. These Gulf countries cannot afford to allow immigration when their identities are all the more under threat. The expat community in Singapore, which the UAE is often compared to, forms just 25 per cent of the population while in the UAE, expat guests form 88.5 per cent of the 8.3 million population, up from 85 per cent in 2006. I am just glad this official document will clearly distinguish between the sons and daughters of this beautiful land and its resident guests.

Alex TT 7 years ago

Here we go again, let's get this straight, ID, great idea, BAD execution,period. Expats concerns over the new ID it should how much hassle would be to go through the motions (again) and how much is going to cost (again). Typical beauracry we are wasting our working lives on paperwork, Etisalat SIM registration, banks and their paperwork etc.
As for all the locals, WE know we are all "alien" workers, only diference is most of us have choices and the region is just another choice and before anyone starts "if you don't like it........" we all will in due time so don't worry about this one.

James Marshall 7 years ago

I have a question for those who think all foreigners here just want the UAE citizenship. Why would any well-to-do foreigner (who is not an Arab) want the UAE citizenship in the first place ? There are disadvantages in holding UAE citizenship for a foreigner. In UAE citizenship law, there is NO dual-citizenship. So if they do manage to get UAE citizenship by marriage or by some miracle, they would have to give up on their original citizenship. No well-to-do foreigner (who also reads AB), no matter what their citizenship is, will give up on their original citizenship. That would be too much at stake (from their rights to their properties and assets in their home countries). So lets just not bring up these comments anymore that foreigners (especially those who are reading AB) are desperate for UAE citizenship. You may, of course, direct your comments (about not to expect citizenship) to the "stateless" people who live amongst the local population. But I doubt they read AB.

Melli 7 years ago

How could you be thinking this way. Are you a pro-human rights who is always speaking negatively about UAE disregarding the luck of respect and human rights aplied in other countries especially Europe and occidental countries because they are in a mess and are colonizing other countries and having negative TV programs on UAE?!. That is not respectful but here everyone has his chances and opportunities, it is too easy when something goes wrong to say it is the UAE, you have the life on which you have built your foundation and if you command respect, you will be respected wherever you are in the world. Being a local may have advantages but also many obligations, in no world is everything rosy! We can stay here as long as we want providing we have a job or a Company, so what is the problem??? what would it change to be a citizen? to be a foreigner in your own country? unless you, your father and your children were born here, then it is a different matter
but not for most expats.

James Marshall 7 years ago

Alex..you hit the nail on the spot..."Typical bureaucracy wasting our working lives"... I've been here in this country for a long time and it does seem lately that unnecessary paperwork for things that effect people lives more than they fix things are increasing... All these bureaucracy does is to create jobs for the new entrants with no results of visible productivity. Take for example, Emirates ID registration process where entire new levels of jobs were created for nationals where they spent most of their time pushing paperwork under scanners and holding people's hands onto the fingerprint readers. Had they processed the Emirates ID along with the mandatory Medical tests, they could have used half the resources and could have put the nationals talents into better use in other places. Our precious time here could also have been saved and put into spending time doing more productive work and spending with family than unnecessary wasting our lives standing in lines !!!

Omar is back 7 years ago

Alex, until this due time comes, we need to respect this place 100% and if we cannot, leave today with dignity and respect!!!Funny how some westernersor even Asians mention bureaucracy in UAE!!!The European Scheghen visa is the biggest bureuacracy and this is why many European countries arejust now offering lifetime residencies for foriegn investors bypassing the bureaucratic European system!!The Australian or any immigration system in the west is insane bureaucracy!!!The whole complicated and moody taxation system in the west is the worst bureaucracy-one day 75% tax another day 55% then 40%!!!!The UAE ID card or SIM registration or UAE visa system are one of the smoothest in the world!!and UAE ranks high in almost all easy to do business indexes worldwide!!But again, the typical moaning character in Europe while Dubai, Singapore and many giants are overtaking the lead

long time "resident" 7 years ago

I believe that if the government wants to differentiate between expats and citizens its fine, it will apparently be changed when renewing the visa so it probably wont cause too much of a hassle .. to all those people who say that UAE should treat long term residents (like myself) like guests and foreigners .. i disagree .. i have been here 28 years.. i love the UAE .. it provides safety good income and so on .. I consider this my homeland, but i know that if i am forced to leave my job at any point in time .. il be nothing more than an illegal resident and that affects me .. the government should not give citizenship to those that they choose not to but people who have lived here for as long as i have should atleast be given the opportunity to stay on .. it feels as though if im not employed im not contributing so get out .. plus if god forbid in the future if any wars errupt in this region .. the 88 percent of population will probably just go back .. unfortunate

Vicky 7 years ago

I doubt if anybody would be interested in UAE citizenship (or any of GCC for that matter). The serious, long term professionals and investors would probably like the concept of Permanet Residencey (PR), which fecilitates long term stay without giving rights associated with citizenship. It will promote businessmen and skilled talent to stick to UAE with long tem commitment and contribution. However, given the paranoia and quest for revenue channels, it is will remain just another thought.