Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Sons of...Zayid

"But foreign workers now have cause to be nervous for their futures as the oil-rich emirate cuts costs and responds to the youth-driven protests of the Arab spring by tackling unemployment among nationals.
Government bodies and state-linked enterprises in Abu Dhabi are cutting expatriate staff on orders from the "highest levels" of government, employees have been told.  Expatriates have lost jobs at departments such as local government, urban planning and the executive council secretariat, people aware of the matter say. The redundancies aim to consolidate public finances and boost the number of working nationals.  Hiring more nationals may not, some say, necessarily cut costs greatly but this year's uprisings across the Arab world have created a sense of urgency behind "emiratisation", the policy of promoting national employment in Gulf Arab states.  "Security is paramount for this country," says Abdulkhaleq Abdulla, a politics lecturer at UAE University. "Unemployment has been a big part of the Arab uprisings and the government doesn't want to take any chances.""  Yes, `Abdul-Khaliq.  It is about security.  But not security of the people.  It is about the security of the regime that serves US/Israeli interests.