The regional real estate, construction and hospitality sectors have been turned upside down over the last two years, with Covid-19 bringing these sectors to a halt. The impact of the pandemic remains, however, the resurrection of these vital sectors across the region is a welcome relief because they support the development of modern cities, which in turn have attracted commerce and tourism to the Middle East and North Africa.
This latest edition of Law Update, provides vital insights, updates and commentary on the latest trends taking shape across the real estate, construction, hotels and leisure sectors. The articles within this edition cover a broad range of topics, from what’s next for real estate in Dubai, to commentary on Saudi real estate, a market that is set to become the main bedrock of the region for years ahead. You will find articles on reforming real estate laws in Qatar, foreign investment and ownership in Oman, and mitigating risks on hotel construction projects and the lessons learnt from Covid.Read the full report
The UAE government recently announced a change to its Emiratisation programme whereby incentives will be provided to employers who reach the Emiratisation quota whilst fines will be imposed on those that do not comply. The country has set a minimum Emiratisation rate of 2 percent annually for the private sector. The aim is that by 2026 the private sector workforce will be at least 10% UAE national.
This applies to employers registered with Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation (“MOHRE”) so it does not apply to free zone companies and MOHRE exempt companies (who are free to join NAFIS on a voluntary basis).
Emiratisation is an initiative by the UAE government which promotes the employment of UAE nationals in the private sector. The current Emiratisation quotas are:
These are cumulative figures so in year 1 of operation a commercial entity with more than 50 employees should have 2% Emiratisation, in year 2 it should be 4% and so on. Up until now the quotas were not enforced for the commercial sector but are substantially enforced for banks and insurance companies.
From January 2023, private sector companies with more than 50 employees that do not reach the Emiratisation quota will be subject to fines. These new guidelines were authorized as part of the NAFIS programme, which is a federal government programme aimed at increasing UAE national participation in the private sector.
MOHRE will categorise employers as follows:
It was originally understood that NAFIS enrolment and subsequent compliance was elective. This is not the case and NAFIS enrolment and compliance is mandatory for MOHRE registered companies.
The NAFIS programme will help companies to source UAE nationals by means of a portal that they maintain.
Private sector companies will now need to ensure that they are:
Registration with NAFIS can be done through this link here.
If you have any queries on this topic please do not hesitate to reach out to us.