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Global talent and FDI magnet UAE moving rapidly on principles of the 50 program

The launch of the new economic campaign, United Global Emirates, aims to secure the UAE’s position as one of the strongest global economies over the next 50 years

An investment of $6.54 billion had been allocated to create 75,000 new private-sector jobs for UAE nationals Retail giant Majid Al Futtaim (MAF) is set to hire 3,000 Emiratis in a new recruitment drive The UAE has seen 44% growth in inward FDI flows in 2020, compared to 2019

A new advertisement campaign aims to attract entrepreneurs, businesses, and talent to the UAE from across the globe.

Under the slogan United Global Emirates, digital commercials highlight its zero income tax, ease of doing business, and growing population of 190 nationalities.

The initiative will encourage entrepreneurs and professionals to “go global’ with the help of the UAE.

The launch of the new economic campaign aims to secure the UAE’s position as one of the strongest global economies over the next 50 years.

It came a day after the UAE unveiled its Principles of the 50, which lay out the economic, political, and developmental road map for the next 50 years.

Boost to jobs, grants to students

Officials on Sunday, September 12 announced that an investment of $6.54 billion had been allocated to create 75,000 new private-sector jobs for UAE nationals.

The new announcements include grants for students and fresh graduates to take up private sector roles, a $272.5 million graduate business development fund, a government-backed new private-sector child allowance, unemployment benefits as well as career break, and early retirement schemes for federal government employees starting new businesses.

They follow 13 grand projects announced that revealed progressive reforms for residential visas and several economic programs that will bolster the country’s growth.

Among what was announced, UAE nationals employed in the private sector have the option to retire early in order to start their own businesses. Early retirees will be given financial incentives to pursue their entrepreneurial dreams.

The UAE government also announced temporary financial aids for Emiratis who lose their jobs in the private sector due to circumstances beyond their control. They will be supported for six months as they search for a job.

Also, firms in the UAE have been given Emiratisation targets. They have to increase the number of Emiratis by 2% per annum for 5 years to reach 10%.  

The government has also announced a retirement fund for Emiratis in the private sector. And for the first time, monthly allowances will be given to Emirati parents in the private sector to raise their children. They will get $218 per child per month, with a maximum of $872.

Another program will see Emiratis in specialized private sector fields, like health, get paid an additional $1362.4 per month for five years.

Mohammad Abdullah Al Gergawi, Minister of Cabinet Affairs, said the government will bear the cost of training Emiratis for the private sector. During this period, university graduates will be paid $2192 per month.

After the training, they will be given $1362.4 per month in addition to their salaries.

MAF announces recruitment drive 

Retail giant Majid Al Futtaim (MAF) is to hire 3,000 Emiratis in a new recruitment drive. The decision followed the UAE government’s new target of 10% of company workforces comprised of UAE citizens within 5 years.

The vast majority of Emiratis work in the public sector and the government wants to get 75,000 into the private sector within 5 years, under an Emiratization program Nafis.

The company said 3% of the 13,700 people it employs in the UAE are Emiratis, which it intends to boost significantly.

The government stipulates that roles should be skilled and knowledge-based. MAF said it will promote its ‘train to hire’ graduate program at Emiratis leaving university, with several more programs to follow.

UAE, an investment destination

The UAE, for instance, ranked 1st regionally and 9th globally in the Global Competitiveness Report 2021 issued by the Global Competitiveness Center, and ranked 1st globally in 22 indicators.  

One of the key pillars of the UAE’s ambitions is to attract foreign direct investment (FDI) in key sectors, particularly those associated with the knowledge economy and advanced technologies. These include Artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, Blockchain, innovative medical technologies, high-speed transportation, augmented virtual reality, robotics, self-driving cars, and renewable energy.

The UAE has seen 44% growth in inward FDI flows in 2020 compared to 2019, to reach $19.9 bn. The UAE ranked first in the Arab world and 15th globally in terms of its ability to attract foreign direct investment, according to the results of the Global Foreign Direct Investment Report for the year 2021 issued by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development.  

The UAE also ranked first in the West Asia region, receiving 54.4% of the total FDI inflows, amounting to $36.5 bn, and first in the MENA region, receiving 40.2% of the total FDI inflows, amounting to $49.4 bn.

UAE’s GDP totaled $421 bn in 2020, despite the global pandemic, and GDP per capita rose to $43,100.

The country ranked first in the Arab world and second globally in the “Resilience to Epidemics 2021” index, issued by the Consumer Choice Center to rate nations’ response to the onset of COVID-19.

The UAE Central Bank now estimates that positive growth rates for the national economy will be restored by the end of 2021, with estimates of up to 2.5% growth in real GDP, and 3.6% growth in real non-oil GDP. In 2022, this will reach 3.5% growth in real GDP, and 3.9% growth in real non-oil GDP.

The government is working with all stakeholders to double the national economy over the next 10 years to reach $817 bn by 2031.

The UAE has also become a global and regional headquarters for more than a quarter of the world’s 500 largest companies. Being home to more than 28 business and logistical zones with global competitive capabilities, the total trade of goods for free zones rose to $180 bn in 2019, an 11% increase on the previous year.   

UK investments

The United Arab Emirates will pour $13.8 bn into the UK over the next 5 years, as the Gulf state seeks to diversify its economy beyond fossil fuels.

The UK Office for Investment and UAE sovereign wealth fund Mubadala announced the investment in a recent statement, saying that it would boost economic growth and job creation in the two countries and increase investment into technology, infrastructure, and renewable energy.

The UAE has already deployed $1.5 bn into the UK economy since the “sovereign investment partnership” was established in March, including $1.1 bn into the life sciences sector.

The agreement will bolster the UAE’s 10-year plan, unveiled earlier this month, to double the size of its economy and attract $150 bn in FDI by 2030.    

Trade and investment between the UK and the UAE were worth $44 bn in 2019.