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Global employment briefing: United Arab Emirates, June 2017

  • UAE
  • Employment law


Emiratisation updates for private sector employers

The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (“MOHRE”) (formerly known as the Ministry of Labour) issued two ministerial resolutions which became effective as of 1 January 2017. These two new resolutions relate to the continued emphasis on Emiratisation in the UAE’s private sector.

Data Entry Clerks

Firstly, ministerial resolution no. (710) of 2016 mandates that any private sector company employing 1,000 or more employees, must register on the MOHRE’s electronic system (Tasheel) in order to access directly the services of the MOHRE. Further, the resolution provides that such access and data entry to Tasheel, can only be undertaken by a UAE national. So companies, the subject of this resolution, are obliged to directly employ at least two UAE nationals for such specific positions. If required, the MOHRE can provide information on such appropriately qualified UAE nationals to fill the positions.

Occupational Health and Safety Officer

Secondly, ministerial resolution no. (711) of 2016 mandates that companies in the industrial and construction sectors only, who employ 500 or more employees, must directly employ at least one UAE national for the position of an occupational health and safety officer. If required, the MOHRE can provide information on an appropriately qualified UAE national to the company.

If the relevant companies do not comply with these resolutions, they may risk a halt in their work permits being granted. Additionally, for non-compliance with these resolutions, the MOHRE may impose further penalties under existing regulations on the company.

A further ministerial resolution no. (740) of 2016 seeks to incentivize companies to increase their Emiratisation levels by awarding such companies with an improved company classification rating.

It is important for companies falling within the scope of these resolutions to comply with these Emiratisation efforts or they may face penalties.