Emerging Markets In The Middle East Present Growth Opportunities For Developed Economies Abroad

27 August 2015

Dubai Knowledge Village discusses how large-scale macroeconomic events can trigger Middle East HR demand at the AHRI conference in Melbourne.

Dubai, 27 August 2015: Human Resource companies from the world’s developed economies can benefit enormously from the opportunities in fast growing emerging markets like the UAE, where the supply of human capital solutions is struggling to keep up with demand, says Dr. Ayoub Kazim, the Managing Director of Dubai Knowledge Village (DKV), the world’s only free zone dedicated to Human Resource Management and learning excellence.

Large-scale macroeconomic events like Dubai Expo 2020 and the 2022 FIFA World Cup to be held in Qatar have sparked an infrastructure building boom in the Middle East and fast tracked economic expansion. This rapid rate of growth has left many employers in the region struggling to keep up with their hiring needs.
Oxford Economics estimates that Dubai’s winning bid for Expo 2020 will create more than 277,000 job opportunities in the UAE between 2013 and 2021 – mostly in the construction and tourism sectors. HSBC bank meanwhile estimates that about 45,000 new hotel rooms will be needed for the event, increasing overall supply by around 6.4% every year until 2020.

“Developed economies can play a significant role in helping fulfil the human capital requirements for emerging markets like the UAE. Dubai’s strong economic fundamentals, coupled with the ease of setting up a business, makes it a compelling location to grow an HR business,” says Dr. Ayoub.

Dr. Ayoub was a guest presenter at the Australian Human Resource Institute (AHRI) National Convention and Exhibition in Melbourne, Australia this week. The flagship event brings together thousands of human resource professionals, business leaders, owners and directors to discuss the latest industry developments and trends. Dr. Ayoub spoke about the growing opportunities for HR businesses in emerging markets, and highlighted the growth sectors in the UAE where international firms can help in sourcing talent.

Dr. Ayoub also touched on UAE Agenda 2021, a plan that outlines the country’s national priorities. At the heart of this strategy is the transition to an innovation-based economy, a move that will make the UAE an economic, commercial and tourist capital for more than two billion people. The mandates of the UAE government will ensure that qualified staff are required across key sectors such as Education, Healthcare and Infrastructure. HR training and executive search firms that can attract the right employees from established international economies will play a big part in making UAE Agenda 2021 a success.

With other sectors of the UAE economy showing significant rates of expansion, increasing numbers of HR businesses are choosing Dubai as a base to tap into this growth. For example, the renewable energy sector continues to flourish and the UAE is planning to invest over US$100 billion in clean technology in the next five years. The education sector is performing strongly as well, with the country assuming 6th position in competitiveness in higher education and training in the Global Competitiveness Report 2014/15. The total number of students in the Gulf Cooperation Council industry expected to grow at 2.7% a year between 2011 and 2016.

“At DKV we are committed to providing opportunities to bring together industry experts, government, and academia to discuss practical and innovative ways to support the UAE’s growing economy, through training and professional development. Bringing qualified and respected international vocational providers to Dubai is a major step in helping businesses develop and grow. It is crucial that countries look beyond their borders for human capital solutions.

We want to encourage more vocational training centres to assist those looking for non-traditional higher education programmes that nurture and foster innovation. We want to develop a culture akin to TAFE Australia that builds skills for success in today’s and tomorrow’s world.

More institutions that can help develop innovation centres are also needed. This will in turn stimulate creativity and also benefit the growing number of start-up companies in the region.

Given the close proximity of Dubai to many major international markets, its safety, and lower cost of living compared to cities such as Sydney, New York and London, it’s no surprise that Dubai is considered the regional hub for the HR industry,” Dr. Ayoub added.