Company fined Dh100,000 for evading Emiratisation targets

The business had reduced the number of employees to 50 by cancelling work permits

A private sector company has been fined Dh100,000 for evading Emiratisation targets. Chris Whiteoak / The National
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A company has been fined Dh100,000 for evading Emiratisation targets.

The business fraudulently reduced the number of its employees to fewer than 50, from 68, by cancelling their work permits, before issuing new permits through an associated company under the same employer.

The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation said the private-sector company, which it did not name, would still be required to meet the Nafis programme targets based on its real situation before the evasion.

Ministry officials noticed employee data was being manipulated and visited the company to investigate.

Inspectors found the employees whose work permits had been reissued were still actively working at the company.

The ministry warned the company that further breaches would result in larger fines: Dh300,000 for a second offence and up to Dh500,000 for a third or subsequent breach.

"We will deal firmly with any company proven to be defrauding Emiratisation targets. Necessary measures will be taken against it,” the ministry said.

Companies racing to meet the mid-year Emiratisation deadline have been granted an extra week due to the Eid Al Adha holiday.

Officials announced that the deadline to meet the target would be pushed back from June 30 to July 7.

Companies that do not meet the deadline will face a fine of Dh42,000 for each Emirati role not filled by July 8.

The half-year target for the private sector was for 1 per cent of the workforce to be filled by Emirati employees.

Companies with fewer than 50 employees are exempt from the programme.

The Nafis programme was launched in September 2021 to drive Emiratisation in the private sector.

It aims to create 75,000 jobs in the private sector by 2025.

Updated: June 21, 2023, 4:08 PM