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UAE to give conglomerate favourable treatment after local hiring pledge By Reuters


© Reuters. FILEPHOTO: Local residents are concerned about unemployed men who gathered to get food aid from them following the COVID-19 (coronavirus disease) pandemic that struck Dubai, United Arab Emirates on July 4, 2020. Picture taken Jul

DUBAI (Reuters) – The United Arab Emirates will give favourable treatment to a locally-owned conglomerate after it pledged on Saturday to hire thousands of citizens, days after the government unveiled a $6.5 billion plan to get more Emiratis in private sector jobs.

On Twitter, Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum thanked Majid Al Futtaim, the shopping mall owner, and promised that it will be granted priority when government contracts are awarded.

Majid Al Futtaim, with 15.6 billion dirhams (or $4.25 billion) in revenues in the first six months of 2018, earlier announced that it would employ 3,000 Emiratis within the next five-years.

“We have a collective sense of responsibility to support and upskill the talented and ambitious national workforce that exists in the UAE,” Chief Executive Alain Bejjani said.

It employs approximately 411 Emiratis out of 13,700 currently employed in UAE, according to the company. The UAE is home to one of the most important shopping center operators in the Middle East.

Majid Al Futtaim operates also in Africa and Central Asia in areas such as hotel management, real estate development, and project management.

Sunday’s announcement by the government that 24 billion dirhams (6.5 billion dollars) would be spent on benefits and subsidies in order to bring 75,000 Emiratis into private industry over five years was a sign of confidence.

Most Emiratis are currently employed in government jobs, where they are paid better and have longer working hours than in the private sector.

($1 = 3.6728 UAE dirham)

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