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UAE Women’s Participation in Private Sector Grows

The UAE’s labour laws prohibit gender-based discrimination in the workplace and removes other restrictions placed on females.

By Maggie Mancini

Women’s participation in the UAE’s private sector grew by 23.1% in 2023, according to research from the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation. Legislation in the UAE prohibits gender discrimination in the workplace and encourage more women to join the workforce.  

The UAE Labour Law stipulates that female employees should receive the same salary as their male counterparts for the same job. This law ensures the protection of women’s rights and their enjoyment of equal job opportunities with men, enhancing the country’s competitiveness regionally and globally.  

Additionally, the labour law removes all restrictions imposed on women working during night hours and in challenging sectors like mining, construction, manufacturing, energy, agriculture, and transportation. The law prohibits employers from terminating the service of a female employee or giving her notice due to pregnancy.  

The UAE adopted the gender balance strategy 2022-2026, which aims to make the country a global model for gender balance. This includes economic participation, financial inclusion, well-being, protection, and global leadership. According to the Gender Equality Index 2022 issued by the United Nations Development Programme, the UAE ranked first in the Arab world and 11th globally. The country also topped the Middle East and North Africa region for the third consecutive year, according to the Women, Business, and the Law 2023 report from World Bank.  

Tags: EMEA February 2024, EMEA News

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