Pakistani expat creates UAE’s first job portal for Emiratis

Job portal created for Emirati nationals by Pakistani expat Danish Haidri is an official internship partner of Careers UAE 2020. (Photo Courtesy: Danish Haidri)
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Updated 17 December 2019

Pakistani expat creates UAE’s first job portal for Emiratis

  • JobsForNationals aims to fill the gap between employers and local UAE talent
  • After success in UAE, Haidri wants to open a dedicated job portal for Saudis

ISLAMABAD: A Pakistani expat in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has created an exclusive job portal with career and internship opportunities for Emirati nationals.

“This job portal was developed to fill the gap between employers and UAE national talent,” Danish Haidri, the founder and CEO of JobsForNationals, told Arab News on Saturday.

The portal is an official internship partner of Careers UAE 2020, a recruitment and training exhibition which will be held at the Dubai World Trade Center on March 10-12.

Prior to JobsForNationals, Haidri said over the phone from Dubai, the UAE had no job marketplace dedicated solely to Emirati talent.

Danish Haidri, the founder and CEO of Jobs for Nationals (second left) signs a memorandum of understanding with the City University College of Ajman (CUCA) and City School in Ajman, UAE on Nov. 21, 2019. (Photo courtesy: CUCA)

Haidri’s platform was launched in 2016, but became fully operational in mid-2019. It supports the UAE government’s policy of Emiratization, which obliges companies and organizations to increase the number of Emirati citizens in their workforces, particularly in the private sector.

The policy, introduced in the past decade, is pivotal to the UAE Vision 2021 and transition from an oil-dependent to a knowledge-based economy.

“Companies were posting jobs on their own or generic websites, so shortlisting UAE nationals only was a gigantic task. The idea (of the new portal) was to connect employers, jobs and UAE national talent across all seven emirates on an exclusive platform with smart, engaging content and transparency,” Haidri said, adding that over 35,000 Emiratis and nearly 150 companies have already registered.

As his UEA enterprise was inspired by Saudis, Haidri’s next target is a dedicated job portal for Saudi nationals.

“I got this idea of creating a special platform for UAE nationals from Saudis, as they started a drive to provide jobs to Saudi nationals,” he said.

“Saudis have created a lot of opportunities under Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman during the past few years, he said, explaining that his interest in the Kingdom is also personal, as he has spent most of his life in Saudi Arabia.

“I grew up there. So the next market I am looking at is Saudi Arabia, where we have already started searching for local partners,” Haidri said, expressing hope that in the next three months the portal will be ready.

Speaking about Pakistani expats, he said they have contributed a lot to both the UAE and Saudi Arabia, and there are many success stories of Pakistanis in these countries.

“Pakistanis are innovative people. They have shown it in both Gulf countries,” Haidri said, adding that the governments of the UAE and Saudi Arabia have also been supportive of their Pakistani residents.

Pakistani Umrah pilgrims will be compensated, says Saudi envoy

Updated 28 February 2020

Pakistani Umrah pilgrims will be compensated, says Saudi envoy

  • Ambassador Al-Malki says pilgrims will be able to travel to the Kingdom on the same visa or get a new one
  • PIA spokesperson says passengers can get full refund or get their seats readjusted

ISLAMABAD: Saudi Ambassador to Pakistan Nawaf bin Said Al-Malki said on Friday that all Pakistani Umrah pilgrims affected by the temporary travel ban to the Kingdom due to the threat of coronavirus would be compensated.

“Pakistani Umrah pilgrims who had to travel to Saudi Arabia during the dates of suspension will be compensated in the best possible way,” Al-Malki told Arab News on Friday. “They will be able to travel on the same visa or will be issued a fresh one free of charge.”

Saudi Arabia on Thursday placed a temporary ban on Umrah pilgrims in an attempt to ensure public safety and prevent the spread of coronavirus. The Organization of Islamic Cooperation also supported the Kingdom’s decision to protect its citizens from the epidemic.

“All those passengers who have Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) tickets will be able to get full refund from the PIA offices or their travel agents,” the national carrier’s spokesperson Abdullah Hafeez Khan told Arab News on the phone from Karachi, adding it was up to the passengers if they wanted to avail the refund option or get their seats readjusted after the ban.

Meanwhile, Saudi airlines also announced full refund of tickets through a circular which is available with Arab News.

“The Pakistani mission in Saudi Arabia is in touch with the Saudi authorities on this issue and will take all possible measures to facilitate Pakistani pilgrims,” spokesperson of the Pakistani embassy in Saudi Arabia Arshad Munir told Arab News on the phone from Jeddah.

Faizan Akhtar, a member of Pakistan’s Umrah Travel Agents’ Association told Arab News from Rawalpindi that the situation would become clear in the next few days, but all the passengers would get refunds or manage to travel on the same Umrah package after the ban.

“There was a previous incident of flight suspension during the Pak-India standoff last year which disturbed Umrah pilgrims. They were compensated by the Saudi authorities who extended their visas without extra charges and airlines adjusted their seats accordingly. We haven’t received any official communication on this so far, but the situation will become clear in the next few days,” Akhtar said.