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UAE considering visa-free travel for residents in Gulf region

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is weighing plans for a visa system that would simplify travel for residents to neighbouring Gulf nations, including Saudi Arabia.

The new visa system would allow residents in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) to travel freely within countries that make up the bloc, including Saudi Arabia, UAE Economy Minister Abdulla bin Touq Al Marri said at a conference in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday. The regime could be introduced “very soon,” he said, reports Bloomberg.

The GCC group includes Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait and Qatar. Citizens of the six-nation bloc are free to travel across borders without applying for visas. Foreign residents – which make up the bulk of their populations and come from around the world – still need visas to cross GCC borders.

Visa-free travel among the countries’ residents makes the region attractive by boosting tourism, Al Marri added. (Source: Bloomberg)

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