Dubai targets foreign talent with new ‘Tafdeel’ initiative

Dubai targets foreign talent with new ‘Tafdeel’ initiativeImage Credit: Supplied

Dubai is putting out the red carpet for skilled professionals — the “innovators” so to speak — in select industries with the granting of immediate residency via the purchase of property in the emirate. It is part of a wider government level initiative to attract top-notch talent and which would work to the benefit of the emirate in the long term.

The recently introduced “Tafdeel” programme is helmed by the Dubai Land Department working in tandem with three other agencies — the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs, Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing and the Department of Economic Development.

The stated aim is to make Dubai “the preferred place to live, work and visit”.

The target audience for the initiative will be “leaders in the fields of science” as well as intellectuals and writers, eminent personalities in key sectors such as health care, law, engineering as well as the arts and media.

Also in the loop would be “famous businessmen who aspire to expand their investments in Dubai”, according to feedback from the Land Department.

There are certain prerequisites to qualify for the programme, such as in the case of high net worth investors whose businesses “should be of added value to the economy of the emirate”.

Dubai is also tapping the experiences that other countries have had in this space. For instance, “A programme called ‘Malaysia My Second Home’ was launched according to specific conditions and privileges provided for those wishing to live in Malaysia,” said Majida Ali Rashid, Assistant Director-General at Dubai Land Department.


This is “similar in some aspects to the ‘Taskeen’ programme that we launched recently. However, Dubai, being a chief supporter of the pioneers of thought has come up with Tafdeel, which will set Dubai apart from the rest of the cities that have applied similar programmes to attract investors.”

The Investment Management and Promotion Centre, Land Department’s investment arm, has formulated the criteria for Tafdeel. It would also take the lead in marketing the initiative through tie-ins with local airlines and spreading the word to ‘transit passengers as well as first- and business-class passengers travelling via Dubai Airport’.

“Another way is to coordinate with (UAE) embassies to provide data required for target groups in coordination with relevant authorities within or outside the emirate,” said Majida. “Such databases will give access to important information on direct foreign investments and success stories of people who have lived the Dubai experience and the gains they reaped by living here.

“The purpose is to make Dubai the city preferred by business owners, intellectuals and scientific leaders in all domains [and] with the aim of contributing to the comprehensive economic and social development.”



Source: Manoj Nair, Associate Editor,


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