View of part of the Fujairah Corniche and the Hajar Mountains in the Background

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Why Americans are Scarce in Dubai and the UAE

When the credit crunch hit the USA I had several Americans write to me saying that they were leaving their country to test the waters in the UAE.

As unemployment is soaring in the USA some new graduates in the management and financial fields have been heading for the Emirates but they are struggling to snag a good job. It is an employer’s market at the moment in the UAE.

In an article for the Boston Globe Farah Stockman visits the UAE and concludes: ‘Dubai is rich in everything except Americans’.

Farah finds plenty of American fast food restaurants, lots to remind Americans of Disneyland but U.S. citizens number only 19,000 of the estimated 1.2 million foreigners living here.

Oh yes, there are a few American celebrities whose names are associated with new products—Brad Pitt, helping to design a new American-themed hotel and The Tiger Woods Dubai golf course and resort.

And U.S. companies like Citibank, General Electric, Microsoft, and Halliburton have visible presences, and Harvard Medical School and Boston University have established institutes here.

Check out Farah’s article and discover the conclusion that she came to as to why Americans are hard to find in Dubai and the Emirates.

Do you think Americans are scarce in the UAE and if so why is that?

Do they just keep their heads down or does the UAE=Middle East and the Middle East=danger?

Do Emiratis recognize and seek after the ‘richness’ of Americans and American culture or do they feel that ‘American richness’ is an oxymoron?

Dr Geoff Pound

Image: “Plenty of American fast food restaurants” in the UAE.