Muscat: A senior official at the Royal Oman Police (ROP) has clarified that United Arab Emirates' new decision to impose fees on housemaids accompanying GCC nationals doesn't include Omanis.
"Omani nationals taking along their housemaids while entering the UAE through air and border posts will not have to pay the fee," the official informed.
The official explained that the two countries have a joint agreement to facilitate border crossing for their nationals.
Stressing that the new law doesn't apply to housemaids sponsored by Omanis, an ROP official at Khutmat Malaha border post said, "What is being circulated in the social media regarding imposition of fee on housemaids accompanied by their sponsors visiting the UAE is not true." However, some of the GCC nations are required to pay this amount.
The decision by the UAE authorities to impose fees of AED150 for bringing along a housemaid, accompanied by their GCC sponsors, to the UAE, and AED35 while leaving the UAE has come into effect from August 1.
If the sponsor wants to extend the visa for the housemaid, he has to pay AED250 for annual validity.
Omanis taking along their housemaids to Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait have to pay a fee.
According to Itihad daily newspaper, the United Arab Emirate has started applying the new entry visa and residence system in response to the requirements and developments taking place in the state and to facilitate the arrivals and residents.
The decision issued by the Council of Ministers, No. 22 of 2014, stipulates the charge per visa, residence and duration. For example, for entry permits for a long visit for business or leisure, the applicant has to pay AED550. In case of entry permit for study, training, rehabilitation, the applicant has to pay AED550.
Ahmed Al Nasri, an Ibri resdient, told the Times of Oman that he crossed the border last Saturday along with his family and the housemaid without having to pay any extra money for the housemaid.
Meanwhile, expatriates living in the GCC countries who wish to cross into the UAE through the Hili border post have to pay Dh35 for stamping of visas on their passports while exiting the UAE border.
This same regulation will apply to those travelling to Buriami through the Saa' and wadi Jizi border posts, and will need to pay OMR5 to obtain a visa. Earlier, the entry was free for expatriates.
These rules are part of new regulations for entry and exit of people between Oman and the UAE and to reduce border traffic, particularly at the Hili border post.