The Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf is a regional intergovernmental political and economic union consisting of Arab states of the Persian Gulf, namely: Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates.


Several Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC) countries have begun partially relaxing Covid-19-related restrictions as they seek to ease their economies back into action.




Qatar


Under the instructions of the Qatar Government, entry into Qatar is currently only allowed for Qatari nationals, the children and spouses of Qatari citizens, and holders of a permanent residence permit in the State of Qatar.


From 01.08.2020, pre-approved (i.e., those from “low-risk countries”) QID residents will have the opportunity to travel to Qatar. However, QID residents will not be able to travel without first receiving authorization to travel to Qatar from authorities, and then by providing confirmation of a 14-day quarantine hotel booking.


It is also worth noting that citizens and residents may use e-services portal to find out whether there is a travel ban circular against them so that they can settle this through the competent authority before leaving the country. Travelers should login in with their smartcard to the e-services portal of the Ministry of Interior.


Saudi Arabia


The national curfew in Saudi Arabia ended on 21st of June. In exceptional circumstances, arrangements were made for citizens and residents to return to Saudi Arabia during this period, with a 14-day quarantine period on arrival. The Awdah (return) service will allow tourists and expatriates legally residing in the kingdom and holding a valid visa – this includes ‘exit and return’ and ‘final exit’ documentation, all visit visa categories, and tourist visas – to return home. Repatriation applications can be submitted online via the Absher platform. Information regarding No Return of Resident to Saudi Arabia Until End Of COVID-19 Pandemic is not official and only based on Twitter announcement of Jawazat.


UAE


UAE's federal crisis authority ease travel restrictions for UAE citizens and residents from June 23. It should be noted that recent travel decisions have excluded Dubai, which has its own crisis authority and immigration service and which will accept inbound tourists from 07.07 2020 (https://www.thenational.ae/uae/health/coronavirus-uae-outlines-new-travel-restrictions-for-residents-this-summer-1.1042650).


Passengers returning to the UAE will be required to complete health declarations, take a PCR test and remain in residence until they receive the test result. If the test result is positive, travelers will be required to undergo isolation for 14 days and follow the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) guidelines. This set of action needs to be done within 48 hours of entering the country.


In addition, individuals will be required to download the 'Al Hosn' government app. By using this app, every person can receive his COVID-19 test results directly on phone with a unique QR code (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=doh.health.shield&hl=en).


It should be noted that residents who wish to return to Dubai require government approval. Travelers have to fill in this form on the General Directorate of Residency and Foreign Affairs (GDRFA) website. If GDRFA approved application, residents will get a reference number that allow them to book a flight.


Kuwait


The government has issued new guidelines for travel abroad, and has updated the lockdown regulations. Entry into the country allowed only to the residence of Kuwait or citizens whose husband/wife lives abroad or citizens who reside abroad.


In all the above cases, the duration of travel must not be for less than 30 days. Also, the travel request must be submitted to the Ministry of Interior at least 10 days before departure. In addition, the travelers should sign the documents that the travelers will be responsible of all the expanses related to COVID-19 such as medical treatment and quarantine.


“Moreover, airlines must ensure all passengers traveling to Kuwait have a negative PCR test (COVID-19 antibody testing) not more than four days old at the time of departure. The PCR test result must be in Arabic, and passengers must submit it to the health authorities after arriving in Kuwait” (https://taj-strategie.fr/kuwait-covid-19-immigration-update).


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