Abu Dhabi: Issuance and renewal of visas for residents under the sponsorship of the Dubai Technology and Media Free Trade Zone will soon be linked to registration for Emirates ID cards, the Emirates Identity Authority (Eida) yesterday announced in a statement. The link will be facilitated by the preventive medicine department which was recently opened in Knowledge Village. Hence, residents who apply for new visa or for visa renewal from Sunday (July 31) should first register for an Emirates ID. According to the statement, the decision will also apply to all residents under the sponsorship of Dubai Internet City, Dubai Outsource Zone, Dubai Media City, Dubai Studio City International Media Production Zone, Dubai Knowledge Village, Dubai International Academic City complex, Dubai Biotechnology and Research (DuBiotech), Enpark Energy and Environment, and Dubai Healthcare City. Target Speaking to Gulf News, Dr Ali Mohammad Al Khoury, Director-General of Eida, said the decision to link the Knowledge Village preventive medicine department was part of the Eida's aim of linking Emirates ID registration with visa processes across the country by the end of the year. "We are currently focussing on linking the free zones in Dubai, all of which should require Emirates ID registration as a prerequisite to all visa processes within the next two weeks," Dr Al Khoury said. The preventive medicine department in Dubai Knowledge Village is expected to process more than 3,600 visa application on a monthly basis. Currently, 15 preventive medicine departments across the UAE, including the one in Knowledge Village, are linked with ID registration. In addition, all visa procedures in Ras Al Khaimah, Ajman, Umm Al Quwain and Fujairah require applicants to first apply for an Emirates ID card.