07 October, 2007

Would UAE support a GCC residency cap?

Gulf News
"To enforce a residency cap on unskilled workers of a maximum of six years will contribute to solving the problems associated with the influx of foreign workers and protect our identity," said Al Ka'abi, adding that he is hopeful that the proposal will be approved at the meeting.
I'm not sure what problem is being solved if the number of unskilled workers is not decreased through immigration controls. How is that the less transient you are the more you encroach on the identity of nationals?

Are truck drivers and cab drivers considered unskilled? If not, aren't we creating another problem? Would you think the longer you're here the better you know the road system and how to behave on the roads? Gulf News:
"Drivers' behaviour is a big problem. They come from different nationalities and different backgrounds and behave differently on the road. Campaigns for their education and awareness about traffic laws have also not been a big success because most of them neither read the newspaper nor watch television. Also, they speak different languages," said Al Siri.
"Some drivers on Dubai roads drive as if they are driving in the desert. We need to stop this practice. I have said many times that the RTA cannot make roads for 'drunk' drivers. Respect for traffic laws and good behaviour is important for road safety and the decrease in the number of accidents."
Or is this the problem: The longer we're here, the worse our driving becomes.


Anonymous said...

Here is the problem,the more u stay for a long time here and then u demand more rights.

I think the alternative should be forcing every expatriates in this country that he doesn't/shouldn't have any rights except the ones within their job contracts. That's all.

BuJ said...

John,, brilliant post! I was reading the papers today and wanted to post something along exactly your same lines.

Maybe I am missing something but I believe it's in the UAE's best interests to have people settle here and for the government to UAE-ize them. Let's make them speak Arabic (even if very badly), let's encourage them to buy property here, let's make sure their kids goto UAE schools.

Once we have a stable population, the Government's secondary objective should be to Educate, Educate and Educate. As well as work on health matters, driving matters, etc.

Imagine having 50% of the country's population replaced every 6 yrs? That's madness. You bring in new diseases, you bring in totally new people with possibly worse driving etiquette than the status quo, you erode the already eroding Arabic language, etc, etc.

Why not work on who we have and try to KEEP them here. I want to keep every steel-fixer, hod-carrier, plumber, taxi driver, company director, etc.

Let's educate them. Let's teach the principle of lane discipline. Let's teach the principle that bad driving can be lethal. Let's teach them to live with each other rather than in parallel but separate worlds. The list goes on.

To conclude I think our problems in the UAE are because of the volatile situation of people migration. If we cool it down and encourage the right people to stay (rather than the wrong people to leave) then we'd be going forward :)

rosh said...

Nicely said BuJ :)

ColOman said...

I agree with anonymous... people are welcome to stay but they should not be ever allowed to demand the papers.

Anonymous said...

Certain issues should be looked at properly because sooner or later they will become realities. So why turn a blind eye on it? Instead they should be solved proactively.I am sure that UAE will do a good job at it, its only a matter of time.

Anonymous said...

there is the alternative of naturalizing expatriates. Some suggest to naturalize what is equal to 10% of the Emiratis yearly growth. This would be a good choice but they should be strict with the rules regarding it like being in the country for 20 years, reading and writing arabic, knowing the Emirati culture, wearing our customs .... etc.

Anonymous said...

naturlisation is not an option for us locals, you must realise we are so few. the option maybe to remove work visa and replace with permenant resident visa or something similar, for people who have been around for 20 years.

Anonymous said...

colon mans back yipeeeeee

ColOman said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ColOman said...

we are very few and we will not have a say if this was done. We in the GCC will end up like the native americans or the aboriginis, in little colonies with the tourist looking at us from outside fence :)

Cinderella said...

Great sense of humour Coloman! :) We're on the same wavelength about the naturalisation issue, I don't want you turning into an endangered species ;)

I think most expats want the papers as little as you want to give it. We love Dubai, but we belong to our home countries :)

Agree with Buj, education is the way to go, and not just about driving (btw let's not put all the blame on the poor taxi-drivers or the expats, who will deny that amongst the worst drivers, you also find locals?) Education should also be w.r.t the emirati culture, the arabic language etc..

Thing is though, I alas often hear (or read) so much scorn from expats about the local traditions and values that i despair this all is a 'dialougue des sourds...'?

Anonymous said...

Amazing – rotate the staff in so that you get new staff who have NO IDEA about the culture at all and as they are new come with a fresh new strain of “corrupting influence” and incompetency’s
1. Go down town? Yes wear a microskirt with bare middrift – that’s what we do at home
2. Got a problem with local boys! Flick them a finger; that’s what we do at home
3. Need a favor – pass some money under the table – that’s what we do at home
4. Don’t like the way the guy is looking at you – get the knife out – that’s what we do at home
5. Want to swim in the sea – try a bikini, or if it’s really hot go topless – that’s what we do at home
6. Want to motivate your staff – shout at them for failure; that always works cause – that’s what we do at home.
7. Let’s get trained on the job at the company’s cost – that’s what we do at home
Any others you care to add ?
Oh! of course, after gaining the experience, training and learning how to fit in with local culture – get lost! Cause we need to start again
PS - Oh ! and don’t forget – lock up all the locals so they cant get corrupted by going on holiday or business to all the places those so called “foreign corrupting influences” come from O
PPS Oh ! and don’t forget – start making the big shot’s children , who never speak Arabic, only English, to start talking the talk and dressing the dress.
PPPS Oh ! perhaps after all – its only about money, get rid of the ones who know how much they are worth and get in some new guys who don’t know 1-7 for half the cost.
But then I can see that

Bahraini Labour Minister Dr Majeed Al Alawi in his infinite wisdom didn’t have anything to do with
Maryam Yusuf Jamal who was previously an Ethiopian runner getting Bahraini nationality; or
Rashid Ramzi who was previously a Moroccan athlete ; and I am certain that Qatars Minister of Labour didn’t know anything about
Felix Kikwai Kibore who was previously a Kenyan athlete or
James Kwalia C Kurui who was also a Kenyan athlete getting Qatari Nationality
I can’t be bothered to list all the others but you get my drift – keep the culture pure unless we will not have any medals

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