This article has been reviewed by Wego’s editorial team to ensure that the content is up to date & accurate.

Updated July 2024

The UAE has always been a warmly welcoming country with abundant resources and prosperous opportunities for aspiring talents. The workforce is the country’s treasure, and the government highly values expatriates by providing opportunities such as Golden visas, favorable labor policies, occupational health programs, and, of course, a lavish lifestyle amidst the UAE’s modern ambiance. 

Focusing on what the country truly needs and if your talents and requirements align with the in-demand industries in the UAE, you have a higher chance of entering the country quickly.

In this article, Wego discusses all the in-demand industries and the specific jobs people could target to increase their probability of employment in the UAE.

Disclaimer: The following content is our own expert opinion based on research from various official reports and initiatives.

Top in-demand UAE work visa industries

Some industries in the UAE are more in demand than others, and targeting professions within these sectors could enhance your employment prospects. With major strategies and initiatives being implemented by the UAE government, the following industries are expected to have increased job opportunities. 

Alternatively, if you are thinking about changing your career path, we have provided some basic requirements for entering these industries. If you meet these criteria, you might consider pursuing a career in one of these fields.

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Healthcare 

The healthcare industry in the UAE has been particularly thriving, with the country continuously pushing boundaries to provide the best medical facilities. Various reforms and decisions, both past and present, have been revolutionary, such as the National Genome Strategy, the National Nutrition Strategy 2030, the Hayat Program for tissue and organ transplant and donation, and more. The direct involvement of the government in advancing the healthcare industry promises a great future with ample opportunities for the workforce in this sector.

As part of its ‘We the UAE 2031’ vision, the country aims to position its healthcare sector among the top 10 in the world. With such focused attention and the increasing demand for jobs, qualified professionals in this sector can find amazing opportunities.

Jobs in the healthcare sector may include doctors, surgeons, pharmacists, nurses, midwives, medical technicians, and healthcare administrators.

Requirements

The requirements for these professions can vary significantly. For instance, the qualifications for a surgeon are entirely different from those for a pharmacist. Additionally, experience is a crucial factor in this field; the more experience you have, the higher your chances of employment.

Here are some of the basic requirements that may be necessary for entering the industry:

  • a medical degree (MBBS, MD), nursing degree, or specialized healthcare degree relevant to the specific job
  • licenses from governmental bodies such as the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) or the Health Authority of Abu Dhabi (HAAD) may be required
  • clinical experience and possibly residency programs or specialized training may be necessary

Technology and IT

In an age when everything is becoming digital, especially in a country like the UAE, which is a pioneer in this field, the aim is toward zero bureaucracy and complete digitalization of government sectors. Therefore, the IT and tech fields are always in demand, and skilled talents are highly welcomed in the country.

Initiatives like the Dubai Digital Strategy aim to hire over 50,000 professionals with advanced digital qualifications, while the Dubai Program for Gaming 2033 seeks to hire 30,000 professionals to make Dubai one of the top 10 cities in the global gaming industry by 2033.

Requirements

Qualifications for a career in Tech and IT may include:

  • a degree in Computer Science, Information Technology, Cybersecurity, Data Science, or related fields
  • proficiency in Python, R, Java, C++, and other relevant programming languages
  • certifications from skill development courses may also be beneficial 
  • strong analytical and problem-solving skills, which may be tested during the hiring process 
  • previous work experience in software development, IT management, cybersecurity protocols, data analysis, and cloud solutions

Artificial Intelligence 

With the dawn of artificial intelligence, opportunities in Tech and IT are even broader, as the UAE is actively adopting this technology and implementing changes across the country. Talented individuals in the Tech and IT field can acquire skills and secure roles specifically designed for professionals with expertise in AI.

The Dubai Universal Blueprint for Artificial Intelligence aims to enhance the vision of the Dubai Economic Agenda D33 by implementing AI across all strategic sectors and developing government services. This plan starts with appointing a CEO for AI in each government entity, which is expected to create more job opportunities in the fields of AI and cybersecurity.

The government is also promoting specialization in AI through the National Program for Artificial Intelligence, which offers Bachelor’s degrees and certificates in AI. There has never been a better time to enter this industry.

Requirements

Some of the requirements for a career in AI in the UAE include:

  • a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in Computer Science, Data Science, Electrical Engineering, AI, Machine Learning, Robotics, or related fields 
  • proficiency in various programming languages, machine learning frameworks, data analysis tools, big data technology, and cloud platforms 
  • prior experience in AI roles, data science, software development, or related fields can give you an edge 
  • the ability to explain complex AI concepts to non-technical stakeholders, strong analytical and problem-solving skills, and the capacity to work cooperatively in a team

Banking and finance

The banking sector has been one of the cornerstones of the UAE economy, with many reforms and new policies in recent years, such as the Emirates Development Bank Strategy, which provides financial support of AED 30 billion to businesses and start-ups, and the Central Bank Digital Currency Strategy – the Digital Dirham.

With these new plans and ideas, there is a high demand for experts and professional talents to support the UAE’s vision. Opportunities in this sector include financial analysts, investment bankers, risk managers, compliance officers, accountants, and auditors.

Requirements

The general requirements for a career in banking and finance in the UAE include:

  • a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in Finance, Economics, Accounting, or Business Administration
  • work experience in financial analysis, banking operations, risk management, and compliance is highly beneficial

Environment and sustainability

The UAE is highly ambitious in its development goals, always integrating environmental protection. Initiatives such as theDubai 2040 Urban Master Plan aim to offer sustainable and green mobility solutions, increase green and leisure spaces, and much more. These projects are designed to improve the happiness and quality of life of the country’s citizens and meet the growing demand for talent in this industry.

Opportunities in the environment and sustainability sectors include renewable energy engineers, solar energy technicians, sustainability consultants, and environmental scientists.

Requirements

Here are some of the requirements that you may need to fulfill for a career in this field in the UAE:

  • a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in environmental sciences or any engineering stream
  • internships or previous work experience in renewable energy projects, sustainability consulting, and environmental impact assessments can be advantageous when applying for jobs

​​Hospitality and tourism

The United Arab Emirates has always been a luxury getaway for tourists worldwide, contributing significantly to its annual revenue. With cities like Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and Ras-Al Khaimah, the country naturally attracts travelers.

The government is also taking proactive measures to draw more visitors through enormous plans like the UAE Tourism Strategy 2031, which includes over 25 diverse initiatives and policies to support the development of the UAE’s tourism sector.

The hospitality and tourism sector in the UAE is prosperous for various reasons. With the government’s direct involvement, you can secure a good job with wide exposure and opportunities unlike anywhere else. Some opportunities to look out for include hotel managers, travel consultants, event planners, customer service representatives, chefs, and culinary experts.

Requirements

Here are some of the requirements necessary to enter this sector in the UAE:

  • a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in Hotel Management, Tourism, or related fields
  • experience in top hotels for roles like chefs and other positions, such as hotel management, event planning, and customer service, can boost your employment chances

Is a visa necessary to work in the UAE?

Yes, a work visa is a basic prerequisite for expatriates who wish to pursue a career in the United Arab Emirates. There are various types of work visas categorized based on the type, field, and duration of employment.

The following are some of the work visas available in the UAE:

  • Standard work visa: For employees sponsored by a company registered in the UAE
  • Free Zone work visa: For employees working in one of the UAE’s many free zones
  • Temporary work permit: Issued for temporary work assignments or internships
  • Freelancer visa: Mostly for individuals working in sectors such as media, technology, and education
  • Remote work visa: For employees who work remotely for companies outside the UAE
  • Green visa: For freelancers, skilled workers, and investors
  • Golden visa: A long-term residency visa for investors, entrepreneurs, specialized talents, researchers, and outstanding students

Dependents of expatriates in the UAE can also apply for a Dependent visa to stay with the expatriate. To learn more about each type of work visa in detail, please refer to our dedicated article on Dubai and UAE Work Visas and Permits. 

 

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