Dubai’s billionaire Khalaf Al Habtoor, founder and chairman of Al Habtoor Group, on Thursday said he had instructed to employ UAE nationals across all the units of the well-diversified conglomerate as the government strongly pushes Emiratisation in the private sector.

He further revealed that a decision has been taken to employ UAE nationals as and when there is a vacant position due to the resignation of existing employees.

The group employs thousands of workers with interests in hospitality, automotive, vehicle leasing, real estate, education and publishing.

As of July 7, 2023, the number of Emiratis employed in the private sector reached around 79,000, an increase of approximately 28,770 as compared to last year. The Emiratistion drive dramatically picked up since the Nafis initiative was launched by the government in September 2021.

Nafis was aimed at increasing the competitiveness of Emirati human resources and empowering them to occupy jobs in the private sector over the next five years.

Earlier this week, the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MoHRE) expanded the Emiratisation target to include private sector companies with 20 to 49 employees to hire at least one Emirati in 2024.

“Today, in the Board of Directors meeting, we decided to allocate all new jobs in the various companies of the group to Emirati citizens, both male and female. I instructed all departments to employ citizens who wish to work in the various sectors of the group and to provide training opportunities for them to attract and qualify them.

“The Board also issued a decision today to replace citizens in any vacant job due to the resignation or exit of any employee in the group,” Al Habtoor chairman said in a tweet on Thursday.

He stressed that employing citizens is the group’s duty, hence, it will give a high priority during the coming period.

The group employs 107 male and female citizens working in hospitality, real estate, car leasing, insurance, as well as head office.

“Our goal is to reach 150 citizens, male and female, by the end of this year. We are ready to appoint new citizens in civil engineering, technical and professional roles,” said Al Habtoor.

According to MoHRE, the private sector in the emirate of Dubai leads in terms of hiring the highest number of UAE nationals followed by Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Ajman, Ras Al Khaimah, Fujairah and Umm Al Quwain.

Many government entities are also inviting Emiratis from various fields to join the public sector. Fuel services company Emarat has invited UAE nationals who hold degrees in the field of engineering, finance, business, marketing, IT, environmental science and supply chain management to apply for the jobs. The candidates are required to be graduates or a holder of a bachelor's or higher diploma degree, GPA of 3+ and have completed National Service.

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