- Will start issuing tourist visas from August 30
The United Arab Emirates has announced that it will resume issuing tourist visas to vaccinated travellers from Pakistan and other countries from August 30.
In a tweet, the UAE embassy in Pakistan said that the decision to issue tourist visas also includes countries from which entry was previously restricted.
People will only be granted a tourist visa if they are fully vaccinated with one of the World Health Organisation (WHO)-approved Covid-19 vaccines, the UAE's National Emergency and Crisis Management Authority (NCEMA) said in a statement. Passengers who arrive on a tourist visa must take a mandatory rapid PCR test at the airport.
However, the previous rules for unvaccinated, including exempted categories, remain in place, the statement added.
"This comes as part of the country's strategy to create a balance between public health and the activities of vital sectors, and in support of the national efforts to achieve sustainable recovery and economic growth," NCEMA said.
Earlier, the UAE had made it mandatory for passengers travelling from Pakistan and transiting through Dubai to take a rapid PCR test before departure.
The rapid PCR test should be conducted within six hours of departure, the UAE authorities had directed.
Following the directions, Pakistan established PCR testing facilities at Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Multan, Peshawar, Faisalabad, Quetta and Sialkot for passengers travelling to the UAE.
On August 5, the UAE had lifted a ban on transit flights including from India and Pakistan provided that the passengers presented negative PCR tests taken 72 hours prior to departure.
At the time, tourist visas were not being offered.