Level 36, Burj Al Salam Tower, Trade Center First, Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai, UAE.

emiratisation in uae

Emiratisation Law in UAE For Private Companies

Under Emiratisation Law, all the private sector companies in UAE are subject to recruiting 2% of Emirati employees per year. The UAE Emiratisation law would apply to private companies with employee strength of 50 or more than 50 in numbers.

What is UAE Emiratisation Rule?

The UAE Emiratisation is a government initiative that aims to increase the number of Emiratis in the workforce. This initiative includes several programs and policies encouraging Emiratis to enter and stay in the staff.

The UAE Emiratisation is essential to the UAE’s vision for the future. By increasing the number of Emiratis in the workforce, the UAE can ensure that its workforce is skilled and capable of meeting future challenges.

What is NAFIS?

The UAE federal government made a program called Nafis which aims to boost Emirati human resources’ competitiveness and provide them with the tools they need to work in the country’s private sector over the next five years.

The Nafis UAE program is a federal program that they created to improve the quality of life for United Arab Emirates residents. They designed the program to provide residents access to healthcare, education, and other social services.

It offers financial assistance for laid-off Emirati workers. Nafis also requires that UAE nationals be paid at least AED 800 per month in child support for each kid. In addition, a wage assistance program pays between AED 3,000 and AED 5,000 per month to UAE nationals working in the private sector. The program has been successful in improving the quality of life for residents of the UAE.

The Need for Emiratisation Law

The UAE has more foreigners working here compared to their inhabitants. According to the statistics, Indians are almost 30% of the UAE’s population who work at high levels in companies. After that, Pakistani and Filipinos, and Iranians come.

That’s why it was considered necessary by the UAE government to make this law requiring companies to hire Emiratis. The UAE welcomes foreigners to work here and start their businesses in the UAE. It also gives them tax benefits, work permits, citizenship, and more.

UAE Emiratisation Impact on Private Sectors

According to a new report, the UAE’s decision to increase Emiratisation quotas in the private sector will positively impact businesses.

Several incentives will be given to the business. The report said that higher Emiratisation rates would lead to a more productive workforce and a more efficient allocation of resources. The policy will also help companies better understand and cater to the needs of the Emirati community, it added.

The report noted that the decision aligned with the UAE’s goal of achieving economic diversification and sustainable development. It urged businesses to prepare for the change and create Emirati-friendly workplaces.

Benefits for Emiratisation in Private Sector

Many UAE businesses recruited more people in 2021 than the Emiratisation law’s 2% threshold required. As a result, these businesses subsequently earned large rewards, such as MoHRE fee savings of up to 80%.

The number of Emiratis in the private sector has increased in recent years thanks to various government initiatives encouraging businesses to employ their workforce.

There are many benefits for businesses that Emiratise, including newfound access to a highly skilled and motivated workforce, improved brand image, and a strengthened relationship with the government.

2% Emiratisation Requirements

The Emiratization requirements change after some time. So they do that to ensure they’re complying with all the possibilities to the date to make it easy for the companies to abide by the law.

Currently, the law requires all UAE companies to have a minimum of 2% Emirati employees. It was based on Ministerial Decision No. 279, which was made in 2022.

According to the Emiratisation new regulations, a private firm must employ at least one Emirati for every 50 skillful employees on its payroll. According to MOHRE, skilled workers are

  • The minimum monthly wage of AED 4000.
  • Administrators and managerial-level persons
  • Scientists and humanitarianism
  • Technicians in the domains of science, technology, and humanitarianism
  • Professional writers
  • Salespersons
  • Secondary School Diploma Holders (It’s equivalents or higher)

Below is a chart to quickly understand the two percent Emiratisation law.

Employees That Already Work in the CompanyEmirati Employees that the Company Needs to Hire
50 non-Emirati employeesMinimum 1 Emirati employee
51-100 non-Emirati employeesMinimum 2 Emirati employees
101-150 non-Emirati employeesMinimum 3 Emirati employees

There are many ways to meet the Emiratisation requirements, such as training Emirati employees, hiring Emirati nationals, and offering internships to Emirati students.

Emiratisation Penalties Exemptions

Companies with less than fifty employees cannot abide by Emiratisation laws. On the other hand, UAE companies that fall under the authority of the Ministry of Human Resources & Emiratisation (MOHRE) have to follow the new Emiratisation laws compulsorily. However, this law excludes free zones such as DIFC and ADGM.

From January 1, 2023, all employers subject to the MOHRE’s authority must comply with the new Emiratisation laws.

Emiratisation Penalties for non-compliance

Businesses that do not comply with this law may be subject to penalties, such as fines, loss of business licenses, and even jail time. In addition, AED 6,000 minimum monthly fine for each unhired Emirati worker should be paid as a penalty.

The Emiratisation Law was enacted to ensure that UAE Nationals are given priority in the workforce. This law applies to all businesses with more than 50 employees.

Fines Are to Be Paid in Single Installment

The ministry said that companies who don’t hire Emiratis for any reason would pay an AED 72,000 fine in one installment, i.e., Dh 6,000 for 12 months. Moreover, the ministry said businesses must employ 4% of Emiratis by 2024 if they don’t fulfill the 2% quota in 2023.

According to MOHRE, if a UAE citizen employed by a private company resigns, the company must find an Emirati replacement immediately. If the company fails to do so, it will get no exceptions, be liable to pay the fine, and might get involved in further procedures.


Table of Contents