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In line with the recent meeting called by the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation to address the degree in support of the NAFIS program, we would like to share the following.

Main Aim of Degree

Raising the percentage of Emiratisation in the private sector in which the number of workers is (50)fifty or more at a rate of 2% annually starting from the 5th of May 2022, to reach 10% by 2026.

Targeted Establishments

The targeting criteria include establishments with more than fifty workers upon the date of the announcement in May 2022. In case the total number of staff has been changed (increased or decreased) after the announcement of the decision. It should contact MOHRE or reference the electronic system to confirm requirements specific to them. The focus will be on the number of employees in May and December 2022.

Establishments are targeted based on employment, while nationalization percentages and expected cumulative growth are determined based on skilled workers according to the approved MOHRE classification.


The calculation will be as follow:


Total number of skilled employees multiplied by 2%

For example, 117 x 2% = 2.34 > the fraction will be rounded to 1, so 3 UAE Nationals will be required.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

The number of skilled workers in the facility
that has 50 workers or more
The target number of nationals
for each year
From 0 to 50 skilled labor 1 UAE National
From 51 to 100 skilled labor 2 UAE Nationals
From 101 to 150 skilled labor 3 UAE Nationals
151 skilled labor and above 4 – Note: 1 UAE Nationals, for every 50 additional skilled workers

In general, every fraction will be in favor of National talent recruitment.

Fines and Penalties

In the event of the target not being reached, a fine contribution of no less than (6,000 AED) six thousand dirhams will be paid per month for each national worker who has not been appointed starting from January 2023. The value of the monthly fine contribution will also be increased incrementally at the rate of (1,000 AED) one thousand dirhams per month each year during the next 5 years for each citizen who was not appointed according to the annual target as follows:

Value of monthly fine contribution for
companies who does not meet the target
2022 2023 2024 2025 2026
6,000 7,000 8,000 9,000 10,000

1. The establishment will be prohibited from issuing new and renewal work permits after 31st of December for 2022.
2. After 2 months on the 1st of March 2023, all new and renewals will be stopped for all other establishments under the same owner.
3. The fine contribution will be applied on 1st of January 2023. Fine contribution is payable in one payment for the entire period passed, meaning twelve times six thousand (12 x 6,000 AED) per national.
4. Hence seventy-two thousand dirhams (72,000 AED) for the year of 2022 will be payable and filed against the company.
5. Should an establishment not address the targets set forth by the ministry for 2 consecutive years, the ministry will then classify it within the 3rd category.
6. Twenty thousand dirhams (20,000 AED) for each UAE national hired but NOT working – fake nationalization / mock recruitment.
7. Twenty thousand dirhams (20,000 AED) for submitting wrong or false documents in relation to the UAE National.


An example of a facility with 50 workers, 17 of whom is skilled workers, that did not adhere to the targeted Emiratisation rates.

2022 2% 2% (1 National) 6,000 monthly, 1 x 12 months = 72,000.00
2023 4% 2% + 2% (2 Nationals) 7,000 monthly, 2 x 12 months = 168,000.00
2024 6% 2% + 2% + 2% (3 Nationals) 8,000 monthly, 3 x 12 months = 288,000.00
2025 8% 2% + 2% + 2% + 2% (4 Nationals) 9,000 monthly, 4 x 12 months = 432,000.00
2026 10% 2% + 2% + 2% + 2% + 2% (5 Nationals) 10,000 monthly, 5 x 12 months = 600,000.00

Important to Know

1. Benefits and exceptions that preceded the update the 5th of May 2022 as part of the Tawteen partnership will no longer be applicable.
2. Positions hired previously as part of the ministry requirement will now no longer be applicable and will count towards Emiratisation if hired after the 5th of May 2022. Referring to mandatory PRO and data entry clerk.
3. All UAE nationals hired before the 5th of May will not count towards the 2% for 2022 and must be added on top of the existing staff. For example, if a client already had an Emiratisation percentage of 5% it will now have to go to 7%.
4. If a national is required and then resign or is terminated, they must be replaced immediately, or the fine contribution will be payable for that period.
5. UAE nationals hired under other types of work permits for example part-time and temporary will only if they are registered for pension. If not registered in pension it will not count.
6. GCC nationals will not count towards Emiratisation.
7. Not applicable to Freezone entities for now.

What’s next for the entities that has been flagged?

The establishment is urgently required to access the ministry system to verify the targets based on the ministerial decision. You may contact your account manager to do this on your behalf.

✔ Register on the NAFIS program.

        • Is participation / partnership with NAFIS Mandatory?
          While companies are highly encouraged to be part of NAFIS , creating a company account on the NAFIS platform is not mandatory, however, complying with Emiratisation law is mandatory regardless of how a company wishes to approach the hiring process.
        • Companies that join NAFIS enjoy the following benefits:
            • Reducing the financial burden of employing Emiratis by providing pension rebates. The program offers a subsidized five-year government-paid contribution on the company’s behalf against the cost of pension plans for Emirati staff and full support for the Emirati’s contribution across the first five years of their employment.
            • Increasing the private sector’s attraction to Emirati nationals through child allowance scheme, apprentice program, and salary support scheme.
            • Upskilling Emirati nationals with educational degrees to meet the private sector’s skill requirements.
            • Enabling the search for national talents in a single centralized platform.
            • Fostering the company’s in-country value (ICV) index.

✔ Post vacancies.
✔ Initiate recruitment process to fulfill requirements and reach targets.
✔ Submit support requests if the conditions are met.

More about NAFIS

Launched on 12 September 2021, the second set of ‘Projects of the 50’ contains 13 initiatives to be implemented under a comprehensive federal programme called ‘NAFIS’, (literally means ‘compete’ in Arabic). It includes reforms and financial incentives to drive work opportunities for both young and experienced Emiratis in the private sector. The government formed the ‘Emirati Talent Competitiveness Council’ to develop a strategy to increase the competitiveness of Emirati human resources and empower them to occupy jobs in the private sector and contribute to building the UAE’s economy.

Under NAFIS, the UAE will spend up to AED 24 billion, (USD 6.53 billion) to employ 75,000 Emiratis in the private sector from 2021-2026. It aims for Emiratis to hold 10 percent of the UAE’s private sector jobs by 2026. The UAE’s citizens will be offered a series of incentives to choose private sector jobs, careers of national priorities, and to launch their own businesses in the labour market. The Government will provide salary support, unemployment benefits, child allowance, pensions, and several other benefits to enhance career competencies, vocational skills, and talents for its nationals.

Following are the initiatives under NAFIS:

Formation of the Emirati Talent Competitiveness Council

The ‘Emirati Talent Competitiveness Council’ aims to launch plans and strategies to create 75,000 jobs for Emiratis with incentives to join the private sector. For this purpose, the UAE allocated AED 24 billion to support the plan. H. H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan is the Chairman and Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, is the Vice Chairman of the council, which brings together representatives across the federal government.

Recruitment Targets

The Government set 10 percent Emiratisation target in the private sector companies, over 2022-2026. The jobs given to UAE nationals must be in knowledge and skilled roles.

The Emirati Salary Support Scheme

The Emirati Salary Support Scheme is a grant which aims to incentivize the recruitment of Emirati graduates in the private sector and contribute to their training costs. A monthly top-up of up to AED 8,000 will be given to graduates during the first year of training and a monthly top-up of up to AED 5,000 for five years after recruitment. Top-ups are conditional and based on a range of defined target salaries.

Merit Programme

The Merit Programme aims to incentivize national cadres in specialized fields. Emiratis working as nurses, accountants, and financial auditors, lawyers, financial analysts, and coders will receive a monthly salary top-up of AED 5,000.

Pension Scheme

Emiratis in the private sector who are earning less than AED 20,000 per month, will be given a five-year subsidy against their contributions to the pension plan. The Government will also contribute on behalf of the company against the cost of pension plans for Emirati staff in the first five years.

Child Allowance Scheme

The government will pay a child allowance to children of Emiratis working in the private sector for their care. Each child will have up to AED 800, a maximum of AED 3,200 per month. The scheme applies to children till they reach the age of 21.

Talent Programme

The Talent Programme will invest AED 1.25 billion in developing specialized vocational skills for Emiratis in the areas of property management, accounting, business management, and technology skills.

The Apprentice Programme

The Apprentice Programme is a train-to-hire initiative to build vocational training for Emiratis in private and semi-government companies, with a range of financial awards across a number of business sectors.

Healthcare Development Programme

It is an educational grant to develop 10,000 Emirati healthcare workers by 2026. The programme will roll out a ‘Graduate Healthcare Assistant Programme’, a ‘Higher Diploma in Emergency Medicine’, and a ‘Bachelor’s degree in Nursing’. The programme is supported by ACTVET and Fatima College of Health Sciences.

Unemployment Benefit

The government will pay an unemployment benefit to Emiratis who lose their jobs in the private sector because of circumstances beyond their control. The benefit is for a six-month period.

A Subsidized Career Break

From 2022, a subsidized career break of 6 to 12 months will be available to Emiratis in Federal Government positions to start their own business. During the break, employees will receive 50 percent of their salary.

The Early Retirement Scheme

It is an opportunity for Emiratis in Federal Government positions to take early retirement to explore business opportunities and start businesses in the private sector. These employees can retain their entitlement to full end-of-service benefits, or they can choose to receive five years’ salary payments or a lump sum golden handshake payment.

A Graduate Fund

A fund of AED 1 billion will provide micro-loans to university students and fresh graduates to support their business projects, in collaboration with the UAE’s universities. The fund aims to nurture national entrepreneurs in the private sector.


For more information on NAFIS, please visit: