UAE to link with Iranian electricity grid

The opportunities for engineering positions in Dubai and the UAE have always been promising, and it is forward thinking projects such as the proposal to link the electricity power grids of Iran and the UAE that lead to such opportunities.

Many projects are ongoing at all times in the region, where growth is a constant, and yet this one highlights just why such expertise is required.

Iran already has links to its electrical grid with a number of neighbouring countries and the intention to join up with the UAE is one that opens many new options. Iran’s Energy Minister, Majid Namjou, told the Mehr news agency why the program is important:

“Iran exchanges electricity with most of its neighbours and many of them are interested in increasing their electricity exchange with Iran.”

As the 19th biggest producer of electricity in the world Iran is well placed to export its output, and the UAE – currently in the processes of increasing its own power producing plants – is in need of partners in the area.

With foreign investment helping to speed up the construction of the three major new power plants in Iran, including over $700m from the UAE itself and almost half a million dollars from Germany, there is much scope for production of electricity in the region to be centred in Iran.

As such projects increase in size and scope so the prospect of jobs for overseas engineers does too, and that is just one reason why Dubai has become a popular place for engineering posts for expats.

Dubai Al-Ain road on target

Signs of the recovery of the Dubai construction industry are a regular feature of news reports these days as the region continues to weather the storm, and the recent announcement that the 53km main highway intended to connect Dubai with Al Ain is on course for completion next September (2011).

The road is a major construction undertaking, providing jobs for engineers in all works of the industry, and involves a complex series of tunnels and bridges in its efforts to bridge the gap. With a proposed speed limit of 140kmh it is designed to be a high speed transit route between the two major business regions in the area and will further encourage the economic growth that Dubai is party to of late.

The four lane highway is part of a drive to improve the infrastructure of transport networks in the Al Ain region and as the flagship project is under much scrutiny. The Al Ain Director of Roads has explained how the road will enhance the links that the Municipality needs in order to ensure that it is well placed to benefit from the future growth that is forecast for Dubai.

With many construction projects such as this underway in the region Dubai attracts a wide variety of potential employees in the construction industry and continues to promise excellent benefits and impressive salaries. The commitment to safety and 21st century standards in projects like the Al Ain road displays a step forward in the plan to enhance the prospects of Dubai as a major business centre.

Union Bank of India heads for Dubai

A further boost to the state of the economy in Dubai, and a pointer to future growth, comes with the announcement that the Union Bank of India is to open a branch in Dubai. With foreign investment in the region a major part of the recovery and growth process it is a promising sign when such a major bank moves into the market, and with the promise of help to Indian companies wishing to invest in Dubai there is plenty of scope for added investment opportunities.

Although the Union Bank of India has an office in Dubai this will be a fully fledged branch, and the Khaleej Times reports that the Chairman and Managing Director of the bank – M.V. Nair – has declared that the branch will be dedicated to helping the interests of Indians who are not resident in the region in their quest for business investment.

To be based in the Dubai International Finance Centre – the DIFC – which is the major international hub for the financial world in Dubai, the bank will, according to Nair, focus on foreign currency funding. The DIFC offers a place where trade is much more open, as the Chairman explained in his comments:

“In DIFC, we are permitted to do wholesale business and here the purpose would be… supporting the UAE and India trade that will be major focus.”

With Indian investment in the region growing all the time the announcement is a definite boon for Dubai at a time when foreign investment is vital to the growth of the economy.

Dubai based expats chased by UK debt collectors

The practice of fleeing Dubai with debts outstanding is one that has become well known in the world news in recent times, and that of people felling to the UAE to escape debts in other countries equally so, yet it has recently been announced that lenders in the UAE have been engaging British debt collecting agencies to chase those who have fled the region without settling what is outstanding.

Anyone who believes that they can leave their debts behind is in for a shock, as Michael Collyer, of Global Credit Solutions – a major collections company with offices across the world – told Arabian Business recently:

“From a debt collection point of view, a debt is payable anywhere in the world, wherever it has arisen. Just because a debtor moves country does not remove the responsibility for the debt.”

The problems begin with the court process in the UAE, and the complex legal questions surrounding debt that are a hindrance to the collections process. Reema Ashraf, of Adash and Partners in Dubai, shed light on the problem in her comments to Arabian Business:

“A court judgment in the country of origin of the debt is not automatically enforceable in the UAE unless there is a bi-lateral reciprocal treaty permitting exactly that. If there is no such treaty, then you would essentially need to litigate from scratch in the UAE and bring a claim for unpaid debt. The UAE Courts would have jurisdiction simply by virtue of the fact that the debtor is resident here.”

The difficulty in enforcing collections has so far been a deterrent, yet it would appear that the introduction of these major companies dedicated to surmounting the problem is a major step forward. 

Career Opportunities for Expats with Mobile Telecommunications Background

Few aspects of the telecommunications sector provide as much job growth as the major players in the cell phone race. Those that keep an eye on the hot topics in the UAE cannot help but notice that a large portion of the news these days is centered around mobile technology- from the ban on Blackberries to the increased usage of smart phone technology.

Dubai is no exception to the other areas of the UAE with a fascination for the latest and greatest mobile technology. Considering that telecom companies have been under much scrutiny for the way they handle their customer service concerns, it is understandable why many are looking to make the switch from traditional communication means to mobile services.

As the mobile telecom providers struggle to keep up with the ever-growing demand, the majority are expanding operations. Expanding operations means a need for new employees in all roles in the telecommunications sector.

Customer service experts are needed to handle new sign ups, technicians to handle technical support calls will likely be at the forefront of the hiring, but there will undoubtedly be a need for back end specialists that keep these important communication systems running and functioning properly.

Many expatriates that have a background in cell phones or mobile telecommunications technology will have an overwhelming amount of career opportunities, especially those from areas that are the most technologically advanced countries. Applying direct is certainly an option, but recruiters that specialize in telecommunications will have access to the positions not yet publically posted and may be the more beneficial avenue to explore.

Government Initiatives to Support Gifted Children in Schools

A study conducted in 2007 regarding gifted children in the government run school systems showed a severe lack of support for developing these exceptional children to their fullest potential. The good news is, this is changing across the UAE as more programs are being added that cater to the brightest and most creative of the areas gifted children.

The British University in Dubai reports that these gifted children have more opportunities available today than they did three years ago, and that major plans are underway to ensure every gifted student receives customized programming to assist them in reaching their fullest potential.

The Ministry of Education has setup new programs and awards that encourage teachers currently working in the UAE to obtain the necessary certification to teach these gifted students. The fact that these rewards and programs are needed clearly shows that there is a lack of teachers prepared and trained to teach gifted children.

Dubai is no exception, in fact, it is safe to assume a large number of the UAE’s most gifted students attend schools in Dubai. The lack of properly certified teachers creates an exciting opportunity for teachers from abroad that have experience in the challenges that keeping pace with highly gifted students creates for a school.

Obtaining work in Dubai as a teacher is one of the easier sectors to break into, as many of the private and government run schools are easily accessible for job inquiries, unlike other sectors that you must go through a recruiter to obtain an interview.