Thursday, October 27, 2005

UAE nationals brain drain, but with a flip side :: Khaleej Times

Quote, emphasis added:
Two out of three UAE nationals who leave the shores of the country are skilled workers, a sure indication of brain drain having taken roots in the UAE.

According to the [World Bank] report, the UAE ranks a high fourth in the list of nations losing out skilled workers to other countries, with 67 per cent of the UAE nationals seeking jobs in other countries falling under the educated category.

On the flip side, the UAE, however, fares better in retention of nationals, accounting for one of the lowest rates of migration across the globe.

In the rankings for the ratio of skilled migrants to overall migrants in the year 2000, Qatar and Kuwait are ahead of the UAE, occupying the second and third places respectively behind Taiwan. Saudi Arabia is in the seventh place and Oman ninth, meaning that the top 10 are made up of five GCC countries.
. . .
The findings are likely to create a sense of ambivalence for the UAE Government. On the one hand, the low rate of migration could be read as "all is well," and on the other, it could be a matter of concern that those who do leave overwhelmingly tend to be the most educated workers.

Since the report covers workers aged 25 and above, the migrants do not include the bulk of those who temporarily go abroad to school and university.

It is likely that one reason for the high percentage of skilled workers opting to stay out could be the potential mobility of educated UAE nationals who have internationally-recognised qualifications. The Government could also highlight the large influx of skilled labourers who move to the UAE as redressing the loss of homegrown educated people.

No one at the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs could be reached for comment.
The UAE has enormous wealth and shares that wealth with citizens residing in the country. It's not surprising the UAE has one of the lowest rates of emigration.

The question is why would anyone leave? Part of the explanation surely is that rewards to UAE nationals in the UAE has little to do with merit. Moving to a country where rewards are more closely tied to educational achievement and work effort will be most likely be attractive to those with skills.

Where the brain drain is serious is in places like Iran.

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Blogger CG said...

Expats who live here read the papers, interact well and think they are well-versed in life in the UAE.
For the UAE Nationals there are a lot of hidden 'issues'. If people think being able to get a drink or pick up a female brings freedom then think again.
All assets need to be kept overseas, money in offshore bank accounts and property in France.
Special branch is the name of the game. don't knock them till they have darkened your doorstep. end of comment.

8:45 AM  

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