Singapore mission gets new premises

DUBAI — The cooperation between Singapore and the UAE in trade and tourism is expected to grow further with the improvement of consular services after the shifting of Singapore’s Consulate-General to a more convenient and spacious location in Satwa recently.

By Criselda E. Diala

Published: Sun 20 May 2007, 8:38 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 4:26 AM

Dileep Nair, Consul-General of the Singaporean Consulate, said that the office space they used to occupy at the Sultan Business Centre near Lamcy Plaza was insufficient to cater to the influx of guests and visa applicants that they received on a daily basis.

"Everyday we receive an average of 100 visa applications and this figure reaches to 200 during pre-holiday seasons since lots of foreign residents from the UAE would want to travel to Singapore,” Nair began.

Because of the growing number of applicants, the consul-general said people often had to wait along the corridor as they can no longer be accommodated inside the office. "I believe that spoke of poor service so we pursued the intention of finding a more spacious location. We wanted the public to be served well because that will be a reflection of the country that we represent," he said.

Nair added that they initially sought additional office space within the Sultan Business Centre, where the International Enterprise Singapore (IES) is also located, but to no avail. "Commercial space is a bit hard to come by so we instructed our broker to look for a residential villa that we can convert into an office," he said.

The Singaporean Consulate General, which has the official address Villa No. 124, Street 30d, Community No. 334 in Satwa, is a relatively new multi-roomed property located two blocks away from Shaikh Zayed Road. A detailed location map can be downloaded from, the consulate’s official web site.

Aside from having its own security system, the new consulate has adequate car parking area, conference rooms and Visa Section with electronic queuing system. Nair said they also plan to set up a Mini-Library or Resource Centre where Singaporeans can get themselves updated on latest news and events in their home country.

Currently, the bilateral trade and tourism relations between Singapore and the UAE are continuing to exhibit an uphill climb, prompting the Southeast Asian country to establish an embassy in Abu Dhabi by the end of the year, according to Nair. “The interaction has been very active and we’re expecting it to be even better in the coming years,” he said.

In 2006, the two-way trade revenue between both countries reached $7.6 billion which is 12 per cent higher than the previous year. The trade relations has been mainly in favour of the UAE as it accounted for $4.3 billion of the total.

Singapore tourism, however, has been in demand among UAE travellers, particularly among the locals since they are not required to apply for a tourist visa to enter the city-state. UAE tourist arrivals in Singapore last year totalled 34,000, posting a substantial hike of 21 per cent over the 2005 figures.

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