For the 11th year running, UAE is the country most young Arabs want their own nation to emulate
The UAE has been chosen as the top country in the world to live in by nearly two-thirds of the Arab youth for the 11th consecutive year.
According to the annual Arab Youth survey conducted by Asda’a BCW, while 57 per cent of Arab men and women chose the UAE as their top choice, the US came second (24 per cent), followed by Canada (20 per cent), France (15 per cent) and Germany (15 per cent).
Taking to Twitter, the UAE’s Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, said: “The UAE ranked first in the world in which Arab youth want to live… The movement of people away from you or towards you is the biggest and most sincere vote on the success of your experience… This is my message to all governments.”
في نفس الاستطلاع جاءت دولة الإمارات في المرتبة الأولى عالمياً التي يرغب الشباب العربي العيش فيها … حركة الناس بعيداً عنك أو باتجاهك هو التصويت الأكبر والأصدق على نجاح تجربتك … هذه رسالتي لجميع الحكومات .
— HH Sheikh Mohammed (@HHShkMohd) September 21, 2022
The UAE’s growing economy (27 per cent), safe and secure environment (26 per cent), high salaries and the wide range of work opportunities (22 per cent) and its effective leadership (17 per cent) were its key attractions, according to the research. The UAE’s respect for the region’s cultural traditions, the quality of its education system, the ease of starting a business, and the country’s low taxes were other attractions.
Seen as a ‘model nation’, the UAE also came first (37 per cent) when Arab youth were asked which country their nation should emulate. The US ranked second with 22 per cent, followed by Canada (18 per cent), Germany (14 per cent), France (11 per cent) and Turkey (11 per cent).
The country’s appeal is spread across the MENA region, with 51 per cent of North African youth choosing it as the country to live in, followed by the US (24 per cent).
The survey polled 3,400 young Arab nationals aged 18 to 24 in 50 cities across 17 Arab states, with a 50-50 female and male split.
Sunil John, president, MENA, BCW and founder of ASDA’A BCW, said: “As the region’s model nation for the 11th straight year, the UAE continues to be a beacon of hope and opportunity for young Arab men and women across the Middle East & North Africa.
“What is perhaps most telling is the fact that the UAE scores highly on all the issues that Arab youth said were most important to them in our research, such as job opportunities, education quality and the preservation of the region’s cultural traditions and values.”
Most Emiratis welcome the UAE’s new directives for sustainable growth, according to the survey. A total 94 per cent say they approve of the recent introduction of longer residence visas for expatriates and new rules to obtain them more easily; 84 per cent support the decision to allow expatriates to fully own onshore companies; 83 per cent approve of the soon-to-be-introduced corporation tax; and nearly nine in 10 (87 per cent) accept the adoption of a Monday-to-Friday working week. Moreover, more than half (54 per cent) say they accept the right of unmarried couples to live together.
Most Arab youth are hopeful, but Emirati youth are particularly optimistic, with 91 per cent saying their best days lie ahead of them, and all saying the country’s economy was going in the right direction, the survey revealed.