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Arab female fashion designers discussing ideas in modern studio. Image Credit: Getty Images

Abu Dhabi: Private Sector establishments who are members of the Emiratisation Partners Club can now apply for issuing or renewing the two-year work permit for just Dh300, according to a decision issued by Nasser Bin Thani Al Hamli, Minister of Human Resources and Emiratisation (MOHRE).

Al Hamli on Sunday issued a decision regulating Emiratisation Partners Club (or ‘Tawteen Partners Club’) and introducing a new membership category (Bronze category), bringing the total number of membership categories to four.

Exclusive incentives and privileges are granted to members of the club, most notably reducing the cost of labour recruitment to Dh300. The privileges are given in accordance with the Emiratisation percentage achieved by the member facility and its membership category.

The club was launched last year to drive Emirati job seekers to join the private sector; offer privileges and incentives to private establishments joining the Emiratisation program; and hold periodic meetings with establishments that support Emiratisation.

The minister’s decision aims to boost Emiratisation in the private sector, promote cultural diversity in the labour market and encourage enterprises to employ workers who reside in the country, especially those sponsored by their parents. It also aims to hire Emirati female citizens and people of determination, in line with the National Agenda 2021.

As per the ministerial decision, all establishments registered with the Human Resources and Emiratisation can join membership of the ‘Tawteen Partners Club’ according to four categories, Platinum, Gold, Silver and Bronze.

Earlier, the ministry has released details regarding how it divides select industry sectors into Emiratisation priority groups, depending on the industry’s importance to the country’s economy. Some examples include:

• Companies with at least 250 employees and above operating in finance and health sectors are considered high priority;

• Companies with at least 500 employees in the retail sector are considered medium priority;

• Companies with at least 1,000 employees in the construction sector are considered low priority.

Pursuant to the decision, a periodical review of Emiratisation percentages should be carried out at member establishments every six months. Emiratisation is usually measured by comparing the total number of Emiratis to the total number of workers of a certain facility registered with the ministry and to the number of work permits issued for Emiratis and registered with the ministry.

The decision stipulates that membership of establishments classified in the Silver, Gold and Platinum categories should be renewed after one year of joining, and they would be entitled to all privileges and incentives provided by each category so long as they maintain the criteria on which the membership of the club was granted.

Accordingly, the reduction of labour permits cost shall not be available for any establishment that fails to maintain the Emiratisation percentage, for which it was granted exclusive privileges.

The membership of any facility shall be null and void if one of the membership conditions and terms was breached and facility was found to be ineligible for any category. If the facility failed to address the reasons behind losing the membership within a specific time, it will be reclassified.

According to the decision, the club membership is granted to private sector establishments after submitting a request to the MOHRE concerned department. Within a period not exceeding ten working days of submitting the application, the membership is granted if it turned out that the facility has no record of violation to the applicable legal systems in the ministry and met the required percentage of Emiratisation.

Bronze Category:

• Work permits shall be issued and renewed as per the classification fees of the first class for workers who are recruited by the establishment in accordance with the technical and vocational programmes determined by the Ministry, with the aim of promoting cultural diversity.

• Red carpet service.

• Bronze membership badge

Silver category

• Reclassification to Second class, level B or retaining it in its current class, whichever is better.

• Issuing and renewing of work permits submitted at the skill levels 1 and 2 that are approved by the Ministry in accordance with the classification fees of the first class, under the Cabinet decision No. 15 of 2017

• Work permits shall be issued and renewed as per the classification fees of the first class, for workers who are recruited by the establishment in accordance with the technical and vocational programmes determined by the Ministry, with the aim of promoting cultural diversity. Work permits shall be issued and renewed as per the classification fees of the first class for workers who are recruited by the work permits of their relatives’ sponsorship.

• Possible recovery of bank guarantee when providing insurance to all the establishment’s workers

• Silver membership badge

• Red Carpet services

Gold Category

• Reclassification to Second class, level A or retaining it in its current class, whichever is better.

• Issuing and renewing of work permits submitted at the skill levels 1, 2 and 3 that are approved by the Ministry in accordance with the classification fees of the first class, under the Cabinet Decree No. 15 of 2017

• Work permits shall be issued and renewed as per the classification fees of the first class for workers who are recruited by the establishment in accordance with the technical and vocational programmes determined by the Ministry, with the aim of promoting cultural diversity.

• Work permits shall be issued and renewed as per the classification fees of the first class for workers who are recruited by the work permits of their relatives’ sponsorship.

• Red Carpet services

• Gold membership badge

• Possible recovering of bank guarantee when providing insurance all the establishment’s workers

Platinum Category

• Reclassification to first class

• Possible recovery of bank guarantee when providing insurance to all the establishment’s workers

• Red Carpet services

• Platinum membership badge