According to the latest Dubai Manpower Survey, the emirate has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the world; the last recordings show it’s gone down to 3.6 percent in 2017 and is expected to reach below 1% by 2021. Dubai Labor Force Survey confirms this assessment and states the unemployment rate is stable, but with a slight increase especially among local nationals due to the increase in the expat population entering the UAE labor market on a constant basis.

Unemployment among UAE nationals became an acute problem in recent years due to the number of fresh graduates holding bachelor and higher degrees with the right kind of education, academic qualifications and certificates, and looking for specific work in certain sectors.

Most unemployed are young people, especially in the age group 20-24 years while job opportunities focus normally on workers between the ages of 25 and 39, more than 50 percent of the total UAE labor force.

According to a TASC study 8 out of 10 young Emirati graduates prefer government jobs to the private sector for shorter work hours, better benefits and medical services. One of the concerns of the UAE government, then, is to ensure the number of Emiratis in the private workforce reaches at least 5 per cent in the country by 2020. One of the options is an attempt to align benefits making the private sector more appealing for the country young professionals.

Another issue is the unemployment rate which is higher in the case of women than men; however, this too will soon change as initiatives are being put in place to hire more female workers. UAE women who are employed, however, are likely to be employed at the same level, company and function whilst earning more than their male counterparts, tells Nilanjana Gupta, a Senior Web Journalist/Videographer with Khaleej Times. The UAE have the lowest rates of women participating in their labor force, but has equal pay for equal work or actually, it has been found that at the same level, company and function, they can actually earn 2% more than their male counterparts.

The Dubai labor force is also peculiar because of the significant percentage of expats finding work in specialized professions. UAE companies have opened plenty of vacancies for expats in 2018. This is great news for professionals who have been attracted by the Emirates’ thriving economy, year-round sunshine and tax-free environment.

Are you unemployed and seek work? Then visit often to begin your search for employment anywhere in the UAE.

UAE Unemployment Trends and Issues


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