Improving the Collection and Use of Labor Force Data in the UAE Based on India and Korea's Best Practices

By Patterson, Louise; Pandya, Bharti et al. | Journal of Legal, Ethical and Regulatory Issues, January 1, 2018 | Go to article overview

Improving the Collection and Use of Labor Force Data in the UAE Based on India and Korea's Best Practices


Patterson, Louise, Pandya, Bharti, Cho, BooYun, Journal of Legal, Ethical and Regulatory Issues


INTRODUCTION

In 2015, a report was released by the Gulf Research Center (De Bel-Air, 2015) on the demography, migration, and labor market in the UAE whereby it stated, despite their objective to draw a sketch of the UAE's population and migration dynamics, it was severely restricted due to the scarcity of data available from the federal and emirate-level statistical bureaus. In the data collection section of this report, it states that:

"In contrast to other GCC countries which have set up a population registry like Kuwait and Oman, in the UAE, population figures and demographic characteristics of the resident population (Emiratis and foreigners) are not yet disclosed to the public in real time " (De Bel-Air, 2015).

Furthermore, the report cautions the intercensal population data including post-2005 figures are estimates and that the population projections and estimates in the UAE must treat with caution, for two sets of reasons. First, the scale of irregular sojourn and labor cannot be overlooked, given the speed of population growth in the country, and especially in Dubai, partly due to the dependency of UAE's economy on labor-intensive sectors such as the construction sector. Second, the methodology used to project population figures since 2010 was recently questioned, as it led to the release of extraordinary rates of demographic growth. Therefore, with any labor market data released to the public has to be treated with caution and, in some cases, for a time series analysis, data for some years are unavailable. The data market data collection, during 2008 to 2010 was not publicized for unknown reasons.

In the UAE, policymakers and other stakeholder groups need access to robust data to comprehend how changes in the labor force participation rates can affect the workforce dynamics, evaluate the effectiveness of labor force policies, and to develop an adequate supply of local workers. The current issue in the United Arab Emirates (hereby referred to as the UAE) as to the collection and use of labor force data needs to be improved, especially as the government has implemented its 2020 Emiratization Policy whereby 40% of the labor force must be composed of Emirates.

The purpose of this paper is to examine the labor force data collection methods of three countries, India, the Republic of Korea (hereby referred to as Korea), and the UAE whereby a comparison will be conducted on these three systems of data collection. India and Korea will act as role models for the UAE government in the data collection methodology.

Three countries were selected based on the different situations and data collection needs of those three countries. The three countries have dissimilar labor structures and therefore the objectives of human resource management might be unlike.

Korea can be considered as an industry model due to its rapid industrialization and currently has shifted the knowledge-based society. When focused on the knowledge-intensive industry, Korea has been sourcing its human resources in Korea. India has seen limited success in the structured manufacturing sector but has accounted a powerful human resource base, but it is not being effectively utilized except in the IT industry. Thus, India is experiencing the outflow of human resources, so-called brain-drain. Considering that the UAE depends on foreign human resources in the technology sector, the UAE's labor data management approach should also reflect these characteristics. In addition, various stakeholder groups will then have access to historical data, from the time of the foundation of the UAE to its current labor force data. It identifies strategies that can fulfil the improvement of labor force data collection.

Literature review, interviews, multiple documents, and websites will be examined to identify the extent to which India and Korea have developed the labor force data collections. A comparison will be conducted if there are there are any differences between these three countries as to their data collection methodology. …

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