Visa Quota Approvals
The first step towards obtaining an entry visa and subsequently a work permit is to get visa quota approval from the Ministry of Labour (MOL). The process requires the employer to apply on behalf of the employee. If the visa is applied for working in any of the free zones, then quota approval has to be granted before the employee enters the United Arab Emirates.
Companies registered in the Free Zones have a quota restriction on work visas. In general, it is limited to one foreign worker for every 12.5 square meters of the total office space available. Along with the above mentioned rule, all companies with more than 100 employees have a limitation on quota for certain positions. If the fixed quota has already reached, the company may apply for a quota upgrade but it is not guaranteed i.e. the upgradation may or may not be allowed by the authorities.
The total time required for the completion of the process and get the approval is typically three working days.