UAE preferred choice of Saudi graduates

UAE, 13 Sep 2005

The UAE's attractiveness as a vibrant economy in which to develop a career is growing in the Arab world.

According to a new survey it is now the leading choice among Saudi graduates seeking jobs abroad, according to a study by GulfTalent.

Top Saudi graduates seeking jobs abroad prefer the United Arab Emirates over every other country in the world, including the US, UK and Canada.

GulfTalent spoke to graduates of the King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, Saudi Arabia's leading university and academic institution.

Fifty-four per cent of the graduates surveyed expressed interest in working for at least a few years outside their home country and the largest number chose the UAE as the best place to work.

The United States, Canada and Britain came second, third and fourth respectively.

Saudi graduates cited a number of factors that made the UAE the most desirable place to work, including the close proximity of the UAE to their home, the mix of Arab and Muslim tradition with the open cosmopolitan atmosphere and the fact that most multinationals are headquartered in Dubai.

Graduates also cited the current political situation in the West as a disincentive to seek work in the United States.

"The UAE is an Islamic country and very near to Saudi Arabia," said 23 year-old Suhail from Jeddah, a management information systems graduate.

"The UAE is home to many industries and I can visit my family on the weekends.

"I might have been interested in working in the US, but now it is a less attractive option because of all the anti-Arab sentiment that has built up."

GulfTalent said, "Saudi graduates prefer the challenge and learning opportunity of working with international companies in a multicultural environment over the comfort of secure and well-paid government jobs.

"With Dubai now the commercial hub of the region where most major multinationals are headquartered, it is an attractive choice for young, qualified school leavers looking for experience."