Gulf Labour Markets, Migration, and Population (GLMM) Programme

An international independent, non-partisan, non-profit joint programme of a major Gulf think tank and a globally renowned academic migration centre.
The programme provides data, analyses, and recommendations contributing to the improvement of understanding and management of
Gulf labour migration, population, and labour markets, engaging with and respecting the viewpoints of all stakeholder.

UAE Employed population by nationality (Emirati/ non-Emirati) and Emirate (2005)

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Emiratis Non-Emiratis Total
Abu Dhabi 75,518 711,220 786,738
Dubai 36,888 945,408 982,296
Sharjah 30,742 393,375 424,117
Ajman 8,742 89,235 97,977
Umm Al Quwain 3,660 20,924 24,584
Ras AL Khaima 18,916 82,962 101,878
Al Fujairah 11,194 51,096 62,290
Total 185,660 2,294,220 2,479,880

Source: NBS, Ministry of Economy.


1. Characteristics of data, definitions and population counting operations in the UAE

The first population census was conducted in 1968 by the Council of Developing Trucial States.
After Independence in 1971, a population census of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi was conducted that same year.
The first general population and establishments census in the UAE was conducted in 1975. It was the first census in the region following scientific standards and international recommendations. The other federal censuses were conducted in 1980, 1985, 1995 and 2005.
Reference days for UAE censuses: 30/12/1975; 15/12/1980, 16/12/1985, 16/12/1995; 29/10/2001; 06/12/2005.
Implementation method: the census was carried out according to de jure methodology, i.e. counting persons using their usual place of residence
Population of reference: Emirati nationals usually residing in the country+all foreign residents holding a valid residence permit+resident GCC nationals (nationals of other GCC states don’t need a permit to stay in the UAE)
Employed person: An individual, 15 years old or older, who works for a salary during the week of the time reference, either working for others or self-employed, as well as those who have a job but are not on duty during the week of the time reference (for being on vacation or are delegated for training courses or work programs by their employers and those who work for a family without wage).

2010′ federal census was eventually cancelled but the Emirates Identity Authority (EIDA), an independent federal authority established in 2004, is currently in charge of recording all UAE residents, national and expatriates in order to set up a Population Register and an ID card program. The process is stil ongoing.

2. Institution which provides data

National Bureau of Statistics (NBS)

3. Data availability

Population statistics are available on NBS’s website:

Data are classified by subject and statistical publications are available on PDF or Excel format. Population data disagregated by nationality (Emirati/ non-Emirati) are scarce.
2005′ census data is available at:
The present data is taken from:

Date of access: November 2014.

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