UAE ranks first in Middle East, Africa and Asia to relocate for expats
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UAE ranks first across Middle East, Africa and Asia to relocate for expats

UAE ranks first across Middle East, Africa and Asia to relocate for expats

This has been due to progressive policy changes, new visa regulations and increased resident confidence on the country’s economic growth over the past two years

Zubina Ahmed

The UAE has emerged the number one destination across Middle East, Africa and Asia, and among the Top 10 global destinations out of 197 countries to relocate for expatriates.

This is as per the annual flagship 360° Global Well-Being Survey 2022 by the global health services company Cigna. With 4 per cent of all global expats wanting to relocate to the UAE, it is the only country in the region to feature in this list, the survey revealed.

Now in its eighth edition, the global survey says expatriates who move to the UAE record a longer period of stay in the country, when compared with expats moving to any other country in the world.

The average expat length of stay in the UAE (4.4 years) is significantly higher against the global average (3.2 years) – a reflection of the better quality of life, finances, and a more stable job market in the country. Post the pandemic, UAE residents are also more conscious of their health and well-being with improved scores across all health indices.

The country’s overall well-being grew by 2.1, the highest amongst all countries across the world. This has been due to progressive policy changes, new visa regulations, and increased resident confidence on the country’s economic growth over the past two years.

The survey has also brought out critical pointers in the race for talent, as more employees evaluate their career goals. Jerome Droesch, CEO of Domestic Health and Health Services, Cigna International Markets said, “Employee health and well-being has become paramount, and employers need to step up to create an environment where employees feel more cared for, supported and can grow in their personal and professional capacities. The survey sheds light on opportunities organisations can capitalise on to build awareness, drive change in this direction and improve their positions as attractive places to work for.”

The top findings from the 360° Global Well-Being Survey 2022 are as follows:

UAE ranks well above the global average in overall well-being:

UAE has scored 68.2 on the well-being index, significantly above the global average of 62.9, followed by the USA, UK, China, Spain, and Australia. Compared to 2021, UAE’s index has grown by 2.1, as opposed to a global growth of only 0.7

The physical well-being index in the UAE is 65.3, while globally it is 59.9. The social well-being index in the UAE  is 67.1, while globally it is 62.9

Residents place priority on high-quality family time:

In the UAE, 56.4 per cent of residents said they enjoyed high-quality family time compared to the global average of 5 per cent. Close family ties continue to remain important for people in the UAE.

Employees in the UAE lead the world in workplace mobility:

A growing economy, flexible visa rules and increased opportunities for employees, have resulted in a higher number of employees in the UAE changing jobs over the last 12 months (40 per cent), as opposed to the global average (24 per cent).

Furthermore, 55 per cent have claimed a desire to change their jobs in the next 12 months as opposed to 36 per cent globally. 2 per cent of residents were also happy to take a less paid job, if it meant they had time to do other things, as opposed to 42% globally

Adopting new models to access health care:

52 per cent of residents in the UAE expressed trust in virtual health consultation as much as in-person consultation, as opposed to 41 per cent globally. This scoring ranks UAE among the highest in all the countries. UAE residents are also more willing to share data for virtual health (91 per cent ) as against 81.2 per cent globally.

While the UAE has recorded significant progress against global markets in overall well-being indices, stress remains a threat in the country as employees have complained of unmanageable stress and/or burnout due to longer working hours. T

The stress level in the UAE against other key markets is at 90.6 (74.1, UK; 74.7, Australia), with unmanageable stress at 18.5, compared to the lowest recorded figure of 8.1 in China.

The eighth annual 360° Global Well-Being Survey 2022 was conducted by Cigna in April and May 2022, covering 11,922 respondents aged 18-65 years across key markets worldwide.

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