Sidiqa Suhail Image Credit: Supplied

On the occasion of the UAE’s 45th National Day, citizens and expatriates will celebrate the country’s history and progress. Throughout the decades, the UAE has transformed into a nation of modernity and innovation, embracing its heritage while welcoming people from around the world. How are we contributing to its success? Are we helping communities? Are we boosting development? Readers discuss.

 

Talent

Diversity adds to rich tapestry of UAE

The nation is made up of its citizens and residents, and its strength is determined by the caliber of those who live there. The cultural diversity of the UAE has painted a rich tapestry, and each one of us is constantly adding to that through our every action. Every business we start, every idea we implement, every event we plan adds to the UAE as a whole. The fact that almost every nation on earth is represented here makes the UAE what it is.

That being said, we all continue to collectively contribute to the UAE’s success, and we must each focus on how we can best use our own unique skills to make that happen. If you know you’re a particularly good playwright, then write a play. If you think your event planning skills are great, then plan intellectual get-togethers for people that you know. Each step we take adds up to create a nation whose citizens and residents are creative, hardworking, and tolerant.

I find it amazing whenever I look around me to see people from every walk of life living in harmony. In today’s tumultuous global climate, other nations must take a leaf from our page and learn tolerance and love. This, however, wouldn’t be possible without our enlightened leadership who are continually bringing out the best in us and guiding us in the right direction.

From Ms Sidiqa Suhail

Businesswoman, based in Dubai

 

Equality

Women are improving many aspects in UAE

The UAE has undergone tremendous developments and advancements. Under the rule of its leaders and with the contribution of its citizens, prodigious initiatives have taken place that have immensely improved our standard of living. Additionally, the upcoming Expo 2020 has stimulated exploration, entrepreneurship, and a burst of innovative ideas.

Both expatriate and nationals have worked hand-in-hand throughout the years to cultivate growth in various fields. For the environment, sustainability has been explored and implemented in the use of energy, architecture and buildings, and even environmental tourism, where environmentally friendly activities are practiced to maintain our habitat.

A remarkable development that has resulted from the UAE’s multicultural and educated standards of living is the empowerment of women in the political and economic sectors. Gender equality is no longer an idea that we strive towards, but rather an achievement that we can proudly claim. The endless opportunities that can be sought are not segregated by gender or nationality, but are accessible to anyone. The World Bank states that nearly half of the country’s female population is working. I think that the numbers of working women are definitely contributing to the empowerment movement as their influence is becoming more prominent, especially for those who are in positions of power. I also believe that the increasing number of young girls who seek higher education is an important factor. With this increasing popularity of positive contributions, women are undoubtedly improving many aspects in the UAE.

In general, many areas are widely open for improvement, including our mental health sector, education systems, and the field of medicine, and the fact that individuals today recognize these needs is a step towards progress. The future of our country is in the hands of the current generations, and our country, I am proud to say, has taught us well.

From Ms Reem Waleed

Student, based in Dubai

 

Family

The foundation of a great society is the home

The best thing we can do for the country is to raise our children well. It all starts in the home. A good family will raise their children to love their country and contribute to society, and not stay at home and do nothing. The UAE has introduced various initiatives towards cohesiveness in families where they can bond through activities and events.

This also encourages children to volunteer, engage in communities, and innovate. Today’s youth are very intelligent. This is the iPad generation, and children are keen on learning and thinking outside the box. As pioneers in the UAE, they want to invent and build things that will improve the country. In fact, some of them join university in their teenage years! As parents, we must support their progress.

Additionally, if a family promotes tolerance, then the children will embrace these values as well. In my son’s school, I see children from different countries coming together. Parents can foster tolerance in their children by encouraging them to mingle with other nationalities and people of other faiths. By example, I show my son that we must engage with everyone positively. Embracing diversity from a young age means children will grow up being accepting, making society more tolerant and open.

We are all working together to achieve the UAE Vision 2021, which includes cohesion and education. The UAE’s leaders have shared their vision for the future, and we must work together to achieve it. Expats and citizens are working together and learning from each other.

Even when I travel, I cannot wait to come back to the country. There is just something about the UAE. The people here are very generous, and in this multinational society, everyone is working together. We cannot give up in achieving our goals. We are one team.

From Ms Aisha Al Janahi

Senior social media specialist, based in Dubai

 

Exchange

Expats offer their skills and gain economic opportunities in return

We have over 9.2 million people living in the UAE, out of which, 7.8 million are expatriates of 202 different nationalities, all participating in the labour market.

Recent mega-projects that were completed this year are the Dubai Water Canal and Al Habtoor City. The rest are Museum of the Future, Jewel of the Creek, Deira Islands, Dubai amusement parks, Dubai Frame, Mall of the World, Aladdin City, MBR City – District One, etc. will be following. All of these projects have a huge contribution from hundreds of different nationalities in the form of ideas, labour, investment, and consumer participation.

Because of the number of projects, the number of jobs would also increase together with new businesses. Due to the sheer volume of businesses, hiring expats would be necessary to operate businesses smoothly. Thus we see people of different nationalities and socio-economic backgrounds relocating to the UAE. For most, the money they receive here is more than what they could earn at home. Others depend on this income to cover living costs for themselves and support their families in their home country.

Expats are also drawn to the UAE’s tax-free benefits. In return, they bring their own expertise in their field, whether it is medical, sports, banking, and retail from countries which are already at forefront at what they do. This give-and-take relationship boosts the economy, but also provides the residents an opportunity to earn and enjoy a certain way of life. The UAE has taken a modern approach in order to attract people of all lifestyles and faiths, consequently turning itself into a top choice for expats.

While expats are here, they are also hugely contributing to the economy by spending in the UAE. A few examples are the use of public transports, local banks or going to brunches on weekends. Some may become attached to the country and start buying homes. Other expats act as investors and bring their business headquarters here. It is another way of generating more income and job opportunities to many. Expats are not only here to work, but they are contributing to the UAE’s vision of becoming the number one country in the world.

From Mr Ali Mahmoud Fahs

Operations coordinator, based in Dubai