Planning to Work in Dubai?…Know the Employment Laws

Posted April 15, 2014 by
Swati Srivastava

Swati Srivastava

Expats in Dubai comprise a major section of the working population in the Emirates. If you are also willing to find a job in Dubai, the following post will help you to get some information about Dubai and its employment laws. Read on…

Dubai has a vibrant and fascinating history that attracts visitors from across the world to get a glimpse of the mesmerizing Arabian culture. Dubai is popular for its high-rise buildings, such as Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world. Apart from being a hot tourist place, Dubai is also a good destination to start your career or take your career to all new heights.

Dubai is one of the most expensive cities in the Middle East, whose economy is no more reliant on traditional sectors like Oil & Gas, but diversifying on other areas such as finance, construction and trade services. Today, Dubai is known as a cultural and business hub of the Gulf region and hence attracts job seekers from across the globe. The incredible growth in almost all the sectors in Dubai brings many lucrative opportunities for the job seekers.

Expats finding a job in Dubai always have several questions in mind regarding the employment laws, work permit, and work culture. Finding expat information about these could take a decent time. Hence, here we will throw some light on employment laws and work scenario in Dubai.

Know Your Place- Dubai!

Before planning to work and relocate to any new place, one of the most important things required is the awareness about the location. Dubai was founded by Sheik Maktoum Bin Butti Al-Maktoum in the year 1833. Today, this city is recognized as a cosmopolitan metropolis of the Middle East. Home to many ambitious people, Dubai is the most expensive city to live in the Middle East and also ranks 22nd in the world as of 2012.

Working in Dubai

Working in Dubai provides an excellent opportunity to experience the traditional and multicultural society including more than 200 nationalities. Dubai attracts job seekers across the globe due to numerous employment opportunities as well as tax-free income. In order to get a work permit, expats require a sponsor such as the company you are employed with or a free zone authority that sponsors on behalf of the employer. Employees’ movement from one factor to another is dependent on several factors such as educational qualifications, period of service and earning level.

Those who wish to work in Dubai can find a suitable job in their field of interest by checking on newspapers classifieds, online job portals or registered job agencies. While agencies and newspapers are traditional and time-taking modes, online portals are proving to be more fruitful in today’s time. Using recruitment agencies can help you find a job, but not in all job categories. For instance, if you are searching a banking job, service job, or HR job, recruitment agencies offer a fair chance to find a suitable job. However, if you are looking for a job in science or government field, such agencies may end up in a less productive search.

Employment Laws in Dubai- An Overview

Dubai and UAE recognize its people as a great asset and gives emphasis to their welfare. As a result, the emirate’s government constantly works to bring transparency and proper regulations in Dubai employment laws for the working people in the location.

The Emirates Nationals Development Program (ENDP) and The National Human Resource Development and Employment Authority (TANMIA) play a crucial role in promoting private as well as public sectors on Emiratisation policies in the United Arab Emirates.

Dubai, an emirate in the UAE federation, follows the UAE Federal Law No. 8 of 1980 for regulating its labor relations. The additional labor law regulations are provided by ministerial announcements and other cabinet decisions. According to a latest post on The National, the MoU emphasizes that UAE expats workers, be it in Dubai, Abu Dhabi or any other Emirates, must be protected in all the aspects.

The Dubai Government introduced a landmark ‘Human Resource Law’ in the year 2006 for government employees. The law includes details on work environment, compensation & benefits, code of conduct, employment policies. Job seekers can keep themselves updated on work laws, rights and responsibilities involved in working in Dubai.

The Ministry of Labor passed a new ordinance in January 2011 that restricted the setting up of privately owned employment agencies to the UAE nationals only. For work permit, the expat employee must be registered with the Ministry of Labor (MoU). Similarly, for residence visa, registration with the Department of Immigration under Ministry of Interior is required. These scholarships can be obtained by submitting attested professional and educational qualifications. Apart from these, medical examination is done to check the employee for any communicable disease. UAE nationals are also required to register with the MoU, but registration with the Department of Immigration is not mandatory. Certain job roles are reserved for the UAE nationals such as Government Liaison Officer; however, these are not strictly enforced.

Possible Challenges for Expat Workers

Dubai is recognized as an excellent place to climb the career ladder, irrespective of the industry you choose. With every passing year, job opportunities are increasing for the talented people in industries such as information technology, telecommunication, construction, medicine, engineering, media and oil & gas. On one hand, where this place allows one to follow his dream, on the other hand expat workers could also face some challenges such as recruitment scams.

In the recent past, several job seekers in Dubai got trapped in the recruitment scams, where in they ended up in paying heavy amounts for malicious acts like fake interview trainings. As per the UAE Labor Law, job seekers are not required to pay for any recruitment process. Hence, any expat job seeker who finds any company or recruiter asking for money upfront, it is a caution signal for you.

Companies in Dubai are attracting and creating a pool of talented human resources from a wide range of industries. With greater job opportunities, competition in the job market also grows. Hence, the expat job seekers in Dubai should be clear with the employment laws to take the benefit of the growing job market.

About the Author:

A follower of the latest trends in the employment sector of Gulf countries, Swati Srivastava is an avid writer who loves to share her insight on career and job scenario in the UAE.

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