14 April, 2008

Another threat for expatriates?

The real question is: do our decision makers really believe in what they say? Last time I checked there were dozens of projects lunched that would attract millions of laborer to the market. So I don't know whether they really mean what they say. Are they planning to dump them later, as they did with the censorship for example?

Abu Dhabi: A permanent national authority to implement and follow up on the demographic structure dossier has been set up in the UAE.
The newly-established authority will be responsible for monitoring the completion and implementation of demographic policies.

"Our future and national identity are strongly connected to the demographic structure issue, which requires collaborative efforts and teamwork," Shaikh Mohammad said.

The main aspects of the committee's work include demographic indicators and details, other strategies related to the job market as well as the relationship between demographic structure and national identity.


Mohammed praises creative thinking of first national identity study

Sheikh mohammed to open national identity conference

The demographic imbalance have always been seen by the government and citizens a like as a threat to the country so those steps shouldn't be surprising. The only reason why Emiratis accepted the imbalance was because they believed that it is temporary. I don't think that expatriates should feel threatened because they should have expected something like that coming.

I don't know exactly what they have in their mind but what every Emirati would expect is an authority that would put regulations to increase the number of Emiratis, either by encouraging marriage and having children or by naturalizing limited selected number of people. Their objective should be to increase the number of Arab speakers by importing Arab laborers, restricting the number of other nationalities and forcing the Arabic language.


rosh said...

To add: a culture evolves if it's allowed to flourish. I know many locals, who prefer to keep their culture within their community. There's a whole lot to say, however, I've got nothing new which hasn't been said before.

Keefieboy said...

The problem always is that the people of the UAE cannot survive without outside help. And Dubai is hell-bent on building these massive developments that cannot be fully-populated by locals: there just aren't enough locals, and won't be for several generations. So you have to ask yourself; who is supposed to buy all this new property? Who's designing it and physically building it? Who's going to maintain and service it? And the same goes for the infrastructure needed to make it work. Who works in the power stations and desalination plants? Who drives the taxis, who serves you in the shops, who irons your dishdashes? The UAE has built itself in such a way that not only will it ALWAYS require immigrant labour, it will NEVER be able to function by the efforts of locals on their own. I think that's sad, but seemingly that's what Sheikh Mo wants.

phantom said...

Hey, im all for maintaining 'National Identity'. Any country would. I mean take the United States perhaps? ooops...sorry, thats not the same.. the expatriates over there have a right to naturalization and equal rights as citizens.

However, 'Demographic structure' ? ARE YOU KIDDING ME? They are building the tallest, the largest, the biggest buildings, mini-cities and what not...Who is going to live and work in these? Who is going to service the lifts? Who is going to wash your car? who is going to teach your universities? who is going to invest your money? who is going to clean your toilet?

There is NO OTHER SOLUTION to a sustainable economic growth BUT to retain, cultivate and grow the talent, money and knowledge that the residents (not JUST locals) possess.

This is absurd. I feel offended as I am a 2nd generation local 'expatriate'. I was born in this country and I have lived here, exclusively, for nearly 3 decades now.


Proud Emirati said...

One of their solutions was to make Emiratis the biggest minority, would be smart if they could ever do that.

They should also start attracting Arabs from the west for professional jobs(not the modern ones like Dubai Enterpenur though) and laborers from Yemen or Sudan for example.

Proud Emirati said...

phantom Do u know Arabic? if yes do u speak the Emirati accent? Do u know anything about the UAE culture , heritage, history or food? Do u wear like Emiratis?

Now am insulted !!

One more thing, over 40% of Emiratis are not originally from the country. So I think this percentage of naturalized citizens is way too much. Naturalization should never be a solution unless the answer of the above questions are all yes with an annual limited number.

Proud Emirati said...

edited the last paragraph a little bit

phantom said...

PE, There is NO integration even at the basic levels of society.

Considering that, let me answer your questions:

[Do u know Arabic?] No. I only learnt it for 8 years as prescribed by the UAE Ministry of Education. [if yes do u speak the Emirati accent?] This is laughable. [Do u know anything about the UAE culture , heritage, history or food?] No. I only studied UAE Ministry of Education textbooks and only lived in the UAE for 26 years. So i really dont know anything! [Do u wear like Emiratis?] Isn't it an offence to wear the dishdasha? I know id get spat on by someone.

BTW, while we're at this, there is a bunch of ppl who do answer 'yes' to all of the above. They are simply known as 'stateless'.

p.s. PE, there is nothing to be insulted about. Unless you consider other 'cultures' to be inferior/unequal.

And yes, I do like Emiratis. I happen to work with (and live next to) some really nice emiratis.

phantom said...

PE, I would like to add that I respect what you wrote in the original post.

But,. I do not understand the UAE govt's objectives in establishing a 'Demographic structure'!

Proud Emirati said...

phantom u are not quiet accurate. Most of the stateless were Iranians, Afghanis or Pakistanis who came like 10-20 years ago, threw their passports and pretended that they are citizens of the county.

Most of the ones who had the answer "YES" were given the citizenship. For example the minister of Education, Exterior affairs, ministerial issues are all from Iranian origins. Many Emirati key makers are originally Iranians or Baluchis.

and no it isn't an offense to wear the kandoura, even though u'd look weird in it for obvious reasons.

What is insulting is that u feel insulted about this demographic issue even though u didn't do ur homework well. The fact that u don't know the reason for this demographic structure is another proof that u didn't do ur homework. :P

I don't know exactly what they have in their mind but what every Emirati would expect is an authority that would put regulations to increase the number of Emiratis, either by encouraging marriage and having children or by naturalizing limited selected number of people. Their objective should be to increase the number of Arab speakers by importing Arab laborers, restricting the number of other nationalities and forcing the Arabic language.

This is what I have in my mind so far !

Anonymous said...

Finally I see a future where if I look through the rear mirrior I will see an emarati...NOT

Forigners are here to stay. They need our money and we need their services...sad but true

and to all those people saying how the states has a naturalization program...well American citizenship doesnt give you free healthcare, free education, higher salary and land. That is why we dont give away citizenship and anyways you would never be accepted by us.

Anonymous said...

Proud Emirati asks, "Do u know Arabic? if yes do u speak the Emirati accent? Do u know anything about the UAE culture, heritage, history or food? Do u wear like Emiratis?"

and ....anon @ April 15 01:14 says

"...anyways you would never be accepted by us."

Thanks, am quite clear on what you want! Anon your comment is laughable and hideous!

Anonymous said...

if we need to have a national identity conference...then that alone is bad news...
Tsk tsk tsssk

Anonymous said...

A big justification against having a solely Arab expat workforce came in Kuwait in 1990 when many of them became the pro-Iraqi fifth column.

Far Easterners or Asian laborers are likely to be politicially docile in almost any situation.

Also, once yo

Proud Emirati said...

^^ Yea, I admit the south Asians are much better in this regard but I still believe that it can work if they really wanted that. It doesn't have to be solely Arab, they could be a big minority.

Anonymous @ 15 April, 2008 01:52

I think while the majority wouldn't support naturalization they would still sympathize with whom really integrated in our society and wouldn't mind them having the citizenship and by that am referring to both Emiratis who have been naturalized and native Emiratis.

Smith said...

I can understand the protectionism and fear of "loosing ones culture," but Dubai and the UAE are defining a new culture, and it's wonderful to be here to witness it.

The government is pushing the country forward hard, and that will come with some pain for all, but what is being created is worth the efforts.

In the same way that New York, London, Toronto, and other large metropolitan centers have created their own cultures Dubai and the UAE will do so. And I don't believe that this will be at the expense of the "local culture" it will be an evolution of it.

nzm said...

I think that the answer could lie in giving people Permanent Residency status rather than Citizenship.

It would mean that the people who qualify, (in whatever form that may be), would be able to stay in the UAE without the hassle of having to renew visas etc, but wouldn't have access to the support structure that Emiratis have.

They would have a Permanent Residency sticker in their passports.

Would that work?

Emirates said...

^^ not it wouldn't, because it doesn't solve the demographic problem or preserve the national identity.

the real nick said...


In the same way that New York, London, Toronto, and other large metropolitan centers have created their own cultures

Bollocks. It is now universally accpeted knowledge that the so-called multiculturalism is a failed experiement because it excluded a level of compulsory integration. The result of unimpeded immigration has resulted in segregation of ethnic communities and has fragmented society.

The best one can hope for in large cosmopolitan conurbations is more or less peaceful co-existence and a smattering of ethnic restaurants.

rosh said...

"It is now universally accepted knowledge that the so-called multiculturalism is a failed experiments"

Nick, am curious where you read that? Aren't you and your off-springs, a result of multiculturalism? So am I. What makes you think it's a failure?

rosh said...

Personally, I think it is most unfortunate, that, most UAE folks, are quite oblivious to sentiments of those who've lived there for generations. Most have such little grasp of sentiments of the 2nd/3rd generation offspring's - am not saying it's anybody's fault, it's unfortunate.

the real nick said...


multiculturalism a failed experiment

I will send you links to the relevant studies and reports I read. What you suggest is based on a common misunderstanding. Multiculturalism (MC)as it has been practised in Europe since the 60's is not the same as the famous 'melting pot' in the USA. There is no cultural relativism inherent in this brand of MC. Immigration and naturalisation however is based on cultural relativism, i.e. the choice of becoming part of something new /else, and therefore leaving something behind. New citizens in the USA may not realize it but they are in fact swearing allegiance to the USA over their ancestral countries, and cultures. This is immigration, and ultimately it lleads to assimiliation.

MC introduced the notion that all cultures are equivalent, morally and ethically, which is bollocks and plainly not true. Some cultures are more advanced than others. It's no secret that the tribal culture of northern Pakistan and other paternalistic islamic cultures are a few millennia behind the rest of the world. MC as practised in PC bonkers Britain for example does not require new immigrants to learn / speak English. MC is to provide council leaflets in a dozen languages. This is idiocy. Immigration should mean assimilating language and certain customs (not religion!), not imposing one's own on the host country.

I, and my children are not products of MC. We are products of immigration and assimiliation. A big difference!

Whoa, me fingers' smoking!

Mohamed said...

Universally accepted by Nick = universally accepted by BNP Members

While UK's policy on asylum seekers and repeated offenders was flawed, only racist BNP/KKK members feel that multiculturalism is wrong, that NYC/London are horrible places because there are "so many of them", rural Kansas and Milwall are wonderful places, and that lynchings should be brought back.

Oh and did we mention that South Africa under apartheid was a wonderful place

Anonymous said...

The human pecking order. The current order...in most parts of the mid-east...the "arabs" are at the top...then of course we go to the west where they are pretty much at the bottom of the pile. These piles have been shuffled and stirred and scattered and distributed through human history and will continue to do so. Survival of the fittest I suppose. Humans clinging onto territories and going on the defensive or offensive depending on where they stand on the pile in various geographical locations.

LocalExpat said...

i was going to add my too cents.. but then i am just to tired of repeating my views over and over and over again. Most probably know where i lie on this issue if not then allow me to refer you to my first posting on my blog


rosh said...

....am tired too LE and am set to call it quits.

DUBAI JAZZ said...

Proud Emarati,
How many nicknames do you have? :P

bb said...

Boring topic. Just like the rest the government is just making noise to appease people like PE who may feel threatened their culture is dissolving. Absolutely nothing will come out of it, just like the AED cannot be depegged from the USD the UAE cannot be re-Emiratized. It's called dependence or addiction for drug users.

Emiratis will have to suck it up or leave... wooops.. you can't leave, sorry mate.. Well at least you've got free healthcare.

Now PE, instead of posting pointless article why don't you share with the rest of us - arabic illiterate - some of your culture.

I'm especially curious about UAE food, any good restaurants you would recommend?

Proud Emirati said...

lol DUBAI JAZZ when I login to my other email the blogger ID change accordingly. I didn't know about that till now.

the real nick said...

@ Mohamed,

Next time to you accuse someone of racism do your research first, and since you are seemingly incapable of doing so, I have done it for you. See link below.
If this doesn't get through to you, try googling "trevor phillips, multiculturalism, failed".
FYI: Trevor Phillips, a black man, is head of the Commission for racial equality CRE, a bunch of Labour party PC acolytes. Coming from him, this statement has some credence since it admits all the failing of Labour party policies of the past 15 years.

failed multiculturalism

the real nick said...

And, Mohamed, at no time did I say that because Mulitculti has failed in most large metropolitan areas around the world and led to segregation it would be good to go back to the days of institutional segregation like apartheid.

Your reading comprehension is even worse than the fact that you put words in my mouth.


Anonymous said...

As a Londoner, I have to say I don't think multi-culturalism has failed there.

London is a fantastic place because of the ethnic mix.

The rest of the country needs a lot of work though.

Anonymous said...

For Proud Emirati - serious question.

How do you feel about Leviev - a big company from Israel - opening stores in Dubai?


Is this a step too far?

the real nick said...

Anonymous ^^,

A choice of Greek, Indian, Italian and Lebanese restaurants and seeing lots of different coloured people on the Tube may be acceptable face of Multiculturalism and make you feel all warma nd cosmopolitan, but it is not necessarily successful immigration.

Multiculturalism is also honour killings, abuse of women, inbreeding, social isolation of minorities, and segregation being not only tolerated by the state but actively encouraged as a misguided attempt at "encouraging diversity" and being non-judgemental politically correct.

Having council leaflets printed in 12 languages in order not "to exclude" minorities is bullshit.

It keeps people from integrating, it does not help them become part of the community.

zeitgeistgirl said...

real nick - for all his failings, PE's comprehension seems fine in that you do come across rather like a BNP supporter. particularly unamused by your latest blog post wherein you fail to note that dubai has had the youngest leadership in the world since its inception. and it hasnt failed so far.

Keefieboy said...

Zeitgeistgirl: Sheikh Rashid was 46 when he became ruler of Dubai, and 78 when he died.

zeitgeistgirl said...

nope. that was nominally only his father stepped down many many years before. his first leadership decisions were taken as a teenager in diversifying out of pearling. sheikh mo was the youngest defence minister in the world when he was appointed aged 22.

Very Proud Local said...

I have visited Egypt, India, Turkey, Iran, Yemen, Syria, Jordan and Greece and in each country one truly feels its distinctive rich culture and tradition; regrettably, the UAE is the only place where one does not feel he is in an Arab nation and the authorities ought to do something about its threatened identity. One feels he is in Mumbai or Karachi but definitely not in the United ARAB (or is it South Asians) Emirates. Opening the door wide to aliens from India and Pakistan was a very shortsighted detrimental decision whose impact is being felt by the authorities, the locals, the Arabs and other nationalities all over banks, constructions companies, major multinationals, etc. Indians and Pakistanis fiercely discriminate against locals and other Arab nationals in a very SPITEFUL manner. It is an irrefutable fact that these two Asian nationalities are waging a cold war against locals, our Arab brethren and other nationalities. In this regards, the trashy Gulf News represents the acme of discrimination, when an Indian breaks the law, Gulf News refer to him as Asian, but when a local, Gulf or other Arab national breaks the law, his nationality is highlighted... These are some bitter fact to mull over during the weekend. Anyway, glad that the authorities woke up from their deep slumber and began to reclaim the threatened identity of this nation. Better late than never. By the way, I am a local who believes in Pay Back time and give them a taste of their own venom, let the show begin!

Anonymous said...

As a proud local what have YOU done so far to preserve the national identity? Speak ARABIC amongst your racist self? Hee hee. High time you feel threatened :))

Proud Emirati said...

^^ Not racist, considering our circumstances, his feelings are normal.

Anonymous said...

To proud local, it is well - known that Indians and Pakistanis discriminate against others, but discrimination is also done by Arab expats . UAE Nationals are generally even-handed but a number of expat communities are guilty of discrimination.

You make it sound like Indians and Pakistanis are the only communities discriminating, while your "Arab brethrens" are color blind, race-blind people who dont prefer their own.

Dont forget that in Kuwait, it was a substantial portion of your "Arab brethren" who chose to join hands with the invading Iraqi forces and stab Kuwaitis in their back, while the Asian community were mostly passive bystanders.

DUBAI JAZZ said...

To anonymous:
The exchanged version of what happened in Kuwait after the invasion indicates that it was a portion of the Palestinian community there that have ‘joined hands’ with the Iraqis (and it was, if I may say, some sort of sub-conscious reaction to the elongated Palestinian plight. But I am not justifying it anyway…)..
On the other hands; please do not forget that part of the credit for liberating Kuwait goes for Arab troops. And by the way; they were tasked with the toughest mission in the war, which was to do the street fighting, and house-to-house clean up of Iraqi soldiers falling behind. Some of them managed to rescue hostages as well. You see, the Arab involvement in the first gulf war was not symbolic. Read Mohamed Hassaniyn Haykal’s book on the subject.

Now having said that, I am not saying that Arab expats are angels on earth. I take those diatribes as frictions of different cultures. And I usually take people for who they are, not where they are from. But that is on the personal level. It’d be a lame approach to take on the state decision-making level (arab expats are bad so we cut them down, or Indians are neutrals we let them in..).. there are other strategic factors and more that play a part in this issue…which are apparently not my business nor it is yours….

Anonymous said...

Dubai Jazz,

my post was directed at Proud local, where we went on a rant against Indians and Pakistani, accusing them of nepotism, racism while claiming Arab expats and others were mere victims.

Anonymous said...

Dubai Jazz,

Of course the Arab force had a huge part to play in the Gulf War. What I meant was that its unfair to point fingers at only 2 groups of people and think that everyone else are "victims"

LOCAL HULK said...

Anyway, the fact remains that the process of vacuuming the Indians and Pakis from this whole region has begun. Come on, let us be candid, if these Asians can claim that they built this country, well, we will retort brazenly by saying that it is this same country and region that has provided them with enough funds to build palaces in their respective countries and feed their skeletal frames.
The Indians and Pakis came here carrying handbags, leaving behing their huts, jungles and dilapidated houses; it is this region that has ensured that they have roofs over their heads to protect them from their annual monsoons, it is this region that has made them a little refined (actually, they still spit, burp and fart in public)...learn to give credit where credit is due. I conclude by saying that locals are so grateful that the standard of living is becoming forbiddingly exorbitant because that is one of the main factors that will make these Asians leave in hordes... LOL LOL LOL.

zeitgeistgirl said...

wow all this racism... la hawla wa la quwwata illa billah...

many of you need to learn more of the indian and pakistani contributions to this economy - and vice versa there has always been significant collaboration between these countries and youre allowing some dumb outsiders to foster discontent? the first planes and pilots in dubai were from Pakistan International Airways. The first hospitals and schools in parts of Lahore, Pakistan were created by Sheikh Rashid. Trade for the last 100+ years was driven through the Gulf toward India. Dubai is the home of an alternative as to cooperation - its what GIVES it its edge. And just remember the hadith...'whoever speaks arabic is an arab'. Key figures from Al-Gurg to Al Futaim have called for equitable resolution to the residency issue for years its nothing new. Think of solutions not problems! This is the new Cordoba...

Yours, the resident non-asian/arab expat :)

rosh said...

Proud Local - there are bad folks in every society - so please try and not say an entire race is horrible, that's just horribly wrong. However, I partly agree with you, 'cause I've experienced it myself, so have friends - who are locals, Indians, Pakistanis and Arabs.

This was (and still is) an unfortunate third world mind set/part of working culture some bought into the UAE and though it exists today, it isn't perhaps as bad. Also, the sort of "cult" who discriminate exists in all nationalities, however, more so with Indi/Paks and a certain Arab expat community. That said - I do not believe the majority, especially folks today are this way - they are more professional, accepting and multi-cultural.

Local Hulk: The only things dilapidated are your mind, penis and balls, the one you use for a brain! Moron!

zeitgeistgirl: nicely said.

Anonymous said...

What a waste of time venting and figthing about local identity and respect for culture Blah.Its too late for that and plus if you expect that the foreigners to learn Arabic to fit in ,it wouldnt work out.No alcohol no bars ,dubai wouldnt attract anyone.That why Shiekh Mo,thougth to allow to open the doors and allow foriengers to come.He needs to fix it now.Dubai is no more a islamic country and it would never be one ever .Just LIVE WITH IT.You are expanding and progressing,isnt that what you wanted.

And another thing,why on earth build more and more building to allow people to come and live there,off course you going to be the minority .Soon or later we would need binoculars to see if you exist.LOL.

Instead of focusing of serious matter like what happening around you,like Palestine,women and children being killed day and nigth.You worry about your shit indentity,while you GCC counteries enjoy the suffering of others.This alone is your curse ,so swallow it like a bitter pill.

Anonymous said...

Whoever claims that Asians are docile is naive and gullible.
The Indians and their subordinates the Pakis are very vicious and ungrateful without being provided the citizenship.
The Indians and their subordinates the Pakis are waging a war agaisnt locals and Arabs without being provided the citizenship.
The Indians and their subordinates the Pakis are not willing to learn Arabic without being provided the citizenship.
One does not need a fertile imagination to guess what these Asian ingrates will commit against the indigenous Emiratis IF GOD FORBID, they are ever granted citizenship. As Emiratis, we must learn from Kuwait, Bahrain, Iran and Saudi some self respect, dignity and national pride; these Asians vermin are being rightfully treated like insects in these great countries.

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