Emiratisation in UAE banking sector rose to more than 33% in 2022

Regulator commends local lenders for the progress they have made in hiring citizens

The headquarters of the UAE Central Bank. The regulator set an Emiratisation target of 45 per cent for local lenders by 2026. Photo: UAE Central Bank
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The share of Emiratis as a proportion of total employees in the UAE banks rose to 33.2 per cent in 2022, the UAE Central Bank said on Monday.

The exact figures were not disclosed but the regulator commended local banks for the progress made in attaining Emiratisation targets and said it expected further growth in job opportunities for the country's citizens.

The update came after a meeting between Central Bank Governor Khaled Balama and the chief executives of UAE lenders.

The regulator has set an Emiratisation target for local banks of 45 per cent of total employees by 2026. The 2026 target for senior executive roles is 30 per cent, the Central Bank said.

During the meeting, Mr Al Balama highlighted the important role played by local financial institutions in coming up with green and sustainable finance plans.

“Our meeting with the UAE banks reinforces the importance of sustainability, Emiratisation and consumer protection, and underlines our commitment to achieving our ambitious digitalisation, financial technology and innovation targets,” he said.

The Central Bank also conducted a review of its own initiatives outlined in its 2023-2026 strategy, which focus on promoting greater sustainability practices in its own operations and across the country's financial sector.

It has formed a committee on green and sustainable finance chaired by Mr Al Balama to lead and oversee the progress and enactment of wide-ranging initiatives.

The Central Bank’s banking and insurance division will adopt more robust sustainability practices as part of its supervisory and currency management operations.

Last year, the regulator backed the creation of 5,000 jobs for UAE citizens in the banking and insurance sectors under its Emiratisation programme.

The initiative, approved by Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed, Vice President, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of the Presidential Court and chairman of the Central Bank's board, includes key positions that will be filled by the end of 2026.

Updated: June 05, 2023, 2:21 PM