UAE in top 10 countries to live and work

Emirates ahead of Germany and China for finance and tech; Fifth global choice for engineers

The UAE has been ranked among the world’s top 10 countries to live and work, an international survey of by professionals reveals.

The Global Professionals on the Move Report 2011, commissioned by international specialist recruitment group Hydrogen, surveyed 3,155 professionals from 70 countries.

“Some of the countries where we are seeing highest demand are in the Middle East and Asia, such as Singapore and the United Arab Emirates,” said Tim Smeaton, Chief Executive Officer of Hydrogen Group.

“These countries meet the criteria of highly skilled professionals in terms of safety, stability and cultural fit, they just may not be countries they would first think of in terms of a move abroad.

However, these are countries where English is the common language – indeed, the language of business – and they offer vibrant expat communities with an excellent attitude and a high standard of living.”

He adds: “Put simply, the opportunities professionals say they want are there to be had.”

The survey was conducted in different sectors such as finance, engineering, human resources among others.

In legal, finance, technology and human resources sectors, the UAE was seventh destination of choice ahead of Switzerland, Singapore, Spain, Germany and China.

Similarly, the emirate was fifth choice for engineers as nearly 10 per cent are keen to relocate to the country. Engineers preferred UAE over Spain, Canada, Netherlands, Singapore and France.

Simon Walker, Managing Director of Darwin Park, part of Hydrogen group, said: “The nature of the engineering market is driving high mobility of these professionals.

The biggest employers of engineers are large, global giants that look at and manage their workforce on a global scale.

"Mobility within firms is very much the norm in these organisations, and a lot of the external recruitment we’re seeing is a case of a professional moving overseas with their firm, and then deciding to move firms while they’re out there - they get a taste for the expat life in Dubai, for instance, and are often keen to prolong their stay.”

While technology professionals ranked US as the top choice followed by Australia, UK, France, Canada, Switzerland, UAE, Singapore, New Zealand and Germany.

A breakdown of the data on gender grounds reveals that while more men say they would definitely move abroad, more women are actually in jobs overseas.

The US, UK and Australia were consistently the ‘top three’ countries preferred by this demographic.

However, as our report explains, in most cases the popularity of certain countries does not correlate with where recruitment is most buoyant, with demand for professionals in certain sectors greater in countries in the Middle East and Asia, for example.

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