Private Sector Should Provide At Least 200,000 Job Opportunities for Emiratis

  • 19 November 2013

The private sector should provide at least 200,000 job opportunities within the next ten years to employ around 100,000 to 200,000 UAE nationals aged 15 to 60, an official said on Sunday in the capital.

“Around 7 per cent of Emiratis are currently working in the private sector. Therefore the role of companies in the private sector in employing the national workforce remains a main priority,” Dr Abdullah Mohammad Al Shaiba, head of specialist training at the National Emergence Crisis and Disaster Management Authority, said.

“The private sector should continuously create a mutually beneficial partnership with universities and vice versa. Investors can help in decreasing the unemployment rate among Emiratis by introducing more initiatives and projects that depend on Emirati graduates,” he added.

To have a better understanding of the labour market and its needs, Al Shaiba also pointed out that investors are welcome to design academic curriculums and practical methods.

The role of higher education programmes in preparing UAE nationals for employment and tackling challenges was another main objective of the lecture held in the Emirates Centre for Strategic Studies and Research (ECSSR) in Abu Dhabi.

Al Shaiba said, “With many UAE nationals struggling to find work, it is vital to ask the question, what are employers looking for in a candidate?”

Lack of practical skills within the workforce is the biggest problem facing both employers and employees. Access to vocational learning in schools and universities is essential to driving private sector employment and growth.

“A university degree may be insufficient to land your dream job; however, practical skills and experiences can definitely make you a desired applicant,” he added.

Most higher education institutions within the UAE have not yet succeeded in enriching their students with adequate practical training.

“Higher education programmes should focus more on preparing students for the labour market. Theoretical knowledge is not enough to achieve productive results, practical knowledge should also be developed by helping students to use tools or equipment to perform tasks that are related to their field of study,” Al Shaiba said.

The Higher Colleges of Technology and Ajman University of Science and Technology are on the right track.

“Out of 122 graduates from HCT Colleges and Ajman University, 95 per cent of them confirmed that they are currently working in positions that match their qualifications and field of study,” he added.

Most of the students, who graduate from high school, do not know what major or field of study they will be interested in at university.

What jobs can I get with this major? How I can decide on my major? These questions are extremely important to determine one’s future career.

“Choosing a university major can be a daunting task. Therefore, having a one-year foundation where students get to practise many jobs and expose them to diverse practical experiences following graduation from high school is an important option to consider,” Al Shaiba added.