Professional expats should be allowed to hold dual residency in two GCC states to allow for easier business travel, a group of Saudi workers have reportedly said.
The Gulf has become an increasingly common location for international corporations to do business, and often with offices or partners in several countries.
But according to Arab News, some businessmen in Saudi have complained that travelling throughout the Gulf is cumbersome because they require a business visa or residency for each country visited, despite the six-member states having strong citizenship ties.
Banker Saleh Alam, speaking on behalf of a group of professionals, said having a GCC-wide visa or residency would make business travel easier and increase productivity and efficiency.
“A large number of professional bankers or decision makers often need to visit two countries in the GCC during business tours. They are allowed a 15-day stay in Saudi Arabia and if they need to visit a second country in the region, usually the UAE, they have to apply for another 15-day visa for that country,” he told Arab News.
“If the law allows them to hold resident visas for two countries, they will be spared the hassle of going through visa procedures every now and then.”
The GCC members – the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman and Kuwait – have been discussing a common tourism visa, although it not clear whether it would apply for businessmen.
A study supporting introducing a common GCC tourism visa was referred for approval in October last year.