UAE: Skilled Emiratis in private sector get equal pay to expats in same job, shows study

More than 50,000 nationals are now working in the private sector, with 28,700 having joined since the launch of the ‘Nafis’ programme


Ismail Sebugwaawo

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Published: Sun 12 Feb 2023, 12:20 PM

Last updated: Sun 12 Feb 2023, 5:21 PM

The average salary earned by a UAE national working in a skilled job of any company in the private sector is almost equal to, or not less than, that allocated to other non-Emirati employees working in the same job, and with similar tasks, according to a government study.

Dr. Abdul Rahman Al-l Awar, Minister of Human Resources and Emiratisation, confirmed that the extensive study on the salaries in the private sector in the labour market in the country was conducted recently by the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MoHRE).

He stressed that the MoHRE does not accept discrimination in salaries between a citizen and non-citizen (expat) employee.

“The study confirmed that there is great parity between the salaries of UAE national employees and their expat colleagues working in the private sector, in addition to the privileges and additional financial support granted by the government to Emirati employees, through Nafis programs and initiatives, whether during periods of vocational training or employment, to encourage them join jobs in the private sector,” said Al Awar.

The minister explained that the issue of searching for a job with salaries suitable for the job seeker is left to the supply and demand in the country's labour market – which is among the best in the world, and enjoys unprecedented growth indicators, reflected by the continuous increase in the rate of private companies registered with the ministry.

“Supporting Emirati cadres is among the top priorities of [the] UAE’s wise leadership, which is keen on providing nationals with a decent life, raise their standard of living, and enhance employment opportunities in the private sector,” said Al Awar.

He noted that the private sector remains a reliable partner in the Emiratisation scheme, which provides competent Emirates jobs to help them work alongside their counterparts with international expertise and skills, at a time when the registration of citizens to work in various economic sectors in the country is growing steadily.

The minister also stated that the labour market in the UAE was enjoying unprecedented growth indicators.

During September 2021, the Nafis initiative set a target of getting 75,000 Emiratis private sector jobs in five years.

Among the salary support for Emirati graduates includes Dh5,000 per month for up to five years for university graduates.

There is also a one-year salary support of up to Dh8,000 a month for skilled Emiratis undergoing training.

More than 50,000 Emiratis are now working in the private sector, with 28,700 having joined since the launch of the ‘Nafis’ programme.


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