Private Sector Deadline Approaches for Emiratisation Targets

Private sector companies in the UAE are racing against time to meet their Emiratisation targets by the approaching Friday deadline, as failure to do so will result in fines. In order to avoid penalties, companies with a workforce of 50 or more employees must ensure that 3 percent of their staff comprises Emiratis.

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UAE Private Sector Faces Escalating Emiratisation Targets and Penalties

Originally set for June 30, the deadline was extended to accommodate the Eid Al Adha break. The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation had previously announced that employers failing to achieve the Emiratisation goal would be fined approximately $11,400 (Dh42,000) for each unfilled Emirati position. It is important to note that these regulations apply specifically to skilled positions, and companies operating in free zones are exempt from the scheme, although their participation is encouraged ,In February, the government introduced a new mandate requiring companies to increase the proportion of Emirati workers by 1 percent every six months, replacing the previous annual requirement of a 2 percent increase. By the end of this year, eligible employers are expected to have a 4 percent Emiratisation target, which will further rise to 6 percent in 2024, 8 percent in 2025, and ultimately 10 percent by the end of 2026.

UAE Government's Commitment to Boosting Emirati Workforce in Private Sector

The UAE government is steadfast in its determination to enhance the participation of local citizens in the private sector, as it considers this essential for the country's economic prosperity. Abdulrahman Al Awar, the Minister of Human Resources and Emiratisation, highlighted the progress made thus far, with over 66,000 Emiratis already employed in the private sector and more than 10,000 hired in the first quarter of this year. These promising figures reinforce the ministry's commitment to strengthening the Emirati workforce within the private sector.

UAE's Emphasis on Local Talent and Transformative Changes in Labor Market

The minister has consistently emphasized that the UAE's emphasis on utilizing local talent will bring about transformative changes in the country's labor landscape. Mr. Al Awar stated in December that the UAE's labor market is entering a new phase, focusing on the crucial role of national human capital in the private sector. He expressed confidence in the positive effects of skilled Emirati employees on the economy and underscored the imminent shifts in the labor market, aimed at increasing citizen participation and improving the competitiveness of the local business environment. The minister also acknowledged the support provided by the Nafis program for Emirati professionals and private sector establishments, along with the ministry's commitment to implementing regulations and resolutions that promote citizen involvement in the private sector.

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