Emiratisation in UAE: Why hiring nationals is beneficial for private firms economically

Nationals are willing to take a pay cut to join multinationals, as they want to learn the best international practices and get exposure in different fields

by

Waheed Abbas

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Published: Mon 24 Jul 2023, 1:25 PM

Last updated: Mon 24 Jul 2023, 3:29 PM

The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation has expanded the Emiratisation target to include companies with 20 to 49 employees to hire at least one Emirati in 2024. Previously, only private sector companies with 50 employees or more needed to meet the said targets.

A senior industry executive has said that UAE nationals understand the culture and sensitivities and can help identify the right opportunities for private sector entities to tap into opportunities in the public sector and family-owned businesses.


“It is important to take the Emiratisation initiative seriously, not only because of the penalties for non-compliance but due to the positive impact it would have on companies that wish to engage with government entities or want to work with family businesses," Khalid Farooq, Partner Risk and Forensic Advisory Services of BDO UAE, one of the world’s largest auditing and accounting firms, told Khaleej Times in an interview.

"Nationals know how to approach companies and entities and the sensitivities around certain matters. They can advise accordingly and play a vital role in identifying opportunities,” he added.


Farooq's statement comes as the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MoHRE) earlier this month announced that around 79,000 UAE nationals were working in the private sector.

Invest in nationals

He advised private sector companies to invest in the UAE national workforce as this would reflect positively on the entity to attract more local talent who would be willing to work even on a lower pay scale.

“When UAE national are hired, companies should invest in them from a practical experience perspective. If nationals require any professional certification, firms should also encourage and support them because this would reflect positively on the company and attract more talent even if the pay scale is lower than their peers,” he added.

Nationals’ priority

Farooq stressed that the key purpose of Emiratisation is to have a win-win situation for the employer and the employee.

He pointed out that the growth of individuals is a top priority for nationals, hence, they’re willing to take a pay cut to join multinationals to learn the best international practices and to get higher exposure in different fields as opposed to being in one specific sector.

He strongly advised private entities in the country to make the citizens feel that they’re part of the team and assign them responsibilities which truly reflect their talent.

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