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General and Legal News from the UAE – July 2021 № 3

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published on 26 July 2021 | reading time approx. 3 minutes

 

The following provides a brief overview about the latest business, economic and legal news from all around the United Arab Emirates and GCC region.

 

 


UAE Passenger flights from 6 countries suspended until 31st July

Several Asian and African countries continue to be affected by the extension of flight suspensions from UAE national carriers, that had previously already been put in place until 21st July. Etihad had announced that until the 31st July all passenger flights to the following countries will be suspended: Bangladesh, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Exemptions are only given to diplomats, UAE Nationals, or Golden Visa holders. In this case a negative PCR Test no older than 48hrs before flight departure has to be provided. Additionally, Dubai has also extended its flight suspension on flights to and from South Africa and Nigeria until 31st July as the UAE government restricts travelers from these countries to enter the UAE: Emirates Airline stated that “only one daily passenger flight to Johannesburg will operate as EK763; however outbound passenger services on EK 764 remain suspended. Customers who have been to or connected through South Africa or Nigeria in the last 14 days will not be permitted on any Emirates flights bound for Dubai.” A date for the termination of these suspensions has not yet been announced by the UAE’s General Civil Aviation Authority.
 

German Ministry of Finance: Termination of UAE – German Agreement on avoidance of double taxation

As announced by the Ministry of Finance of the Federal Republic of Germany, the agreement between the Federal Republic of Germany and the United Arab Emirates from 1st July 2010 on the avoidance of double taxation and tax reduction concerning Income Tax will be terminated as of 1st January 2022. From then onward the regulations of German income taxation apply without restriction. It can be noted, that due to the fact that there is no income tax in the UAE, there will be no double taxation, even after termination of the agreement and thus no fundamental change for German citizens earing an income in the UAE.

 

Sheikh Hamdan opens world’s deepest swimming pool in Dubai

Dubai has a new attraction. The world’s deepest swimming pool has been opened by Sheikh Hamdan. It has a depth of 60m, and divers will be taken to a sunken city. The attraction at Deep Dive Dubai has been opened beginning of July in the Emirate of Dubai with the Crown Prince tweeting “An entire world awaits you at Deep Dive Dubai.”

 
The pool that contains 14million L of water, which equals the size of 6 Olympic Pools is located in the neighborhood Nad Al Sheba in Dubai. Guinness World Records has officially classified the pool as the world’s deepest swimming pool. Divers of all levels are welcome. There are two dry-chambers for divers- located at 6m and at 21m depths; it is equipped with 56 cameras to provide full coverage of the pool as well as mood lighting (164 lights stationed throughout the pool) & sound systems. Events can be held for up to 100 people. According to Dubai Media Office the water in the pool is filtered and circulated every 6 hours through siliceous volcanic rock, NASA- developed filter technology and UV radiation in order to ensure freshwater quality. The public (aged 10 and above) will be able to book entry sessions starting late July when visitors will be able to experience three different categories: Discover (taking first steps and a first dive), Dive (dive within one’s own certification limits) and Develop (developing skills).

 

Covid-19: Only fully vaccinated Saudi citizens can travel abroad

Tightening rules will apply in Saudi Arabia from 9th August 2021. According to the ministry of Interior any Saudi citizen intending to travel abroad will be required to have received both doses of coronavirus vaccine. In an official statement by the Ministry of Interior it is said that “the second dose of the vaccine against COVID-19 will be a condition of all overseas travel for all citizens from August 9th 2021.” Exempt from this new rule will be children under the age of 12, those with approved health insurance, patients recovered from the corona virus within the last 6 months and patients recovered from Covid who had received one dose of vaccine.
Official statements had already stated in May that from August onward vaccines would be required to access private and public spaces such as amongst others public transportation. Furthermore, only vaccinated employees both in the public and private sector are allowed to return to their work space. Tightening rules come in line with the summer travels as well as shortly after the annual religious Hajj pilgrimage, where only 60 thousand citizens or residents were allowed to participate this year contrary to the usual 2 million pilgers. Saudi authorities said that there was no Covid-19 case reported amongst pilgrims.

 

National Disinfection Program to be resumed in Abu Dhabi

As part of the UAE’s fight against the coronavirus pandemic the National Disinfection Program had been successfully completed last June 2020. This year the disinfection program, in order to curb the spread of the coronavirus and in order to protect its citizens and as a further precautionary measure, the Emirate of Abu Dhabi has announced that the Abu Dhabi Emergency and Crisis and Disasters Committee will be undertaking the National Sterilization Program starting from 19th July. Consequently, as public places will be disinfected public as well as traffic movement is restricted daily between midnight and 5am. Movement of the public is prohibited unless urgently required (to get essential supplies such as food and medicine) in which case affected individuals need to apply for a movement permit available through the website of Abu Dhabi Police (www.adpolice.gov.ae).

 
During the National Sterilization Program restaurants, cafes, gyms, spas, museums, entertainment centers, swimming pools and beaches, public buses and ferries will all operate at 50% of their usual capacity. Shopping Malls and cinemas will operate at 40 and 30 per cent respectively. An end date to the sterilization program remains yet to be announced.

 

Covid-19: New Travel Rules for vaccinated travelers to Europe

France

Vaccinated travelers can visit France as the country officially reopened its borders. Accepted vaccines are the four EU-approved vaccines: PfizerBioNTech, AstraZeneca, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson. However, visitors from outside Europe as well as from some ‘green’ countries are still required to provide a negative PCR test no older than 72hrs or a negative antigen test no older than 48 hours. This also applies to unvaccinated children from the age of 11.

 

Italy

Visitors from the US, Canada & Japan are now allowed to enter the country provided they can provide a European Union travel certificate: full vaccination, documented recovery from Covid-19 in the last 6 months or a negative PCR test no older than 48 hours before departure. Visitors from Britain must quarantine for 5 days upon arrival. Visitors from Bangladesh, India and Sri Lanka are banned from entry into Italy. – this is equally applicable to those having been in one of the previous mentioned countries during the past 14 days.

 

Greece

Visitors to Greece need to provide a negative PCR test result no older than 48hrs or show proof of vaccination. Visitors furthermore need to fill in their information into a passenger locator form latest 24hrs prior to departure.

 

Spain

Visitors to Spain need to show proof of an official vaccine certificate with accepted vaccines being one of the four EU-approved vaccines as well as two Chinese vaccines authorized by the WHO - visitors must have received the 2nd dose 14 days prior to the intended date of travel. Visitors from Brazil, South Africa and India are banned as well as non-vaccinated tourists from America and other non- EU nationalities. EU citizens need to show an EU travel certificate.

 

Britain

American visitors as well as visitors from most EU nations need to quarantine in government approved hotels.

 

EU

An EU digital travel certificate for vaccine, freshly tested or recently recovered allows people to travel freely within the EU without PCR-tests and quarantine requirements.

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