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Abu Dhabi scraps need for individual alcohol licence

Abu Dhabi scraps need for individual alcohol licence

Residents and tourists will be permitted to buy and possess alcohol from licenced retail shops

Wine glasses

Abu Dhabi has scrapped the requirement for residents and tourists to have a licence to buy and drink alcohol.

A circular sent to alcohol distribution companies and retail stores last week by the Department of Culture and Tourism confirmed the change in regulation.

As per the new rules, customers have to be at least 21 years of age and will only be allowed to consume the beverages inside private homes or licenced areas.

“We would like to announce the cancellation of alcohol licences for individuals, where residents and tourists will be permitted to buy and possess alcohol from licenced retail shops, and are allowed to drink within tourism and hotel establishments, clubs and independent outlets, in accordance with the following requirements,” the circular said.

“The consumer must be 21 years old. The purchase is for personal consumption only and not for resale to others or storage,” it added.

In Dubai, residents continue to require a licence to purchase alcohol at stores.

However, in August, a new smart application process was launched to simplify the process. Non-Muslim residents above the legal age (over 21 years of age) will be able to apply for and renew their alcohol licence by simply taking their Emirates ID to any MMI and A+E outlet.

Read: Smart alcohol licence launched in Dubai

The application process for residents previously required documents such as an NOC letter, tenancy contract as well as a salary certificate showing earnings of over Dhs3000 per month. Last year, the process was simplified with residents requiring copies of Emirates ID, passport, visa and a passport photo to submit the licence application.

Read: Application process for liquor licence in Dubai simplified

 

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