Investors and entrepreneurs granted permanent residency in the UAE will be granted a "gold card" confirming their new status.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai, announced the move on Tuesday.
He said about 6,800 people had been granted permanent residency under the first round of applications.
They collectively pledged investments of an estimated Dh100 billion, he said.
The UAE's new permanent visa is intended to generate foreign investment and attract top engineers, scientists and star students.
"We launched today a permanent resident system named 'Gold Card' in the UAE. It is a permanent residency for investors and for exceptional workers in the fields of health, engineering, science and art," Sheikh Mohammed wrote on Twitter.
"The first batch of Gold Card permanent residence holders will be 6,800 investors whose investments total Dh100 billion.
"Gold Card permanent residence will be awarded to exceptional and talented individuals and to whoever contributes positively to the UAE’s success story.
"We want those people to be permanent partners in our journey.
"All the residents of the UAE are our brothers and part of our large family."