Arab youth have named the UAE as the country in the world they would most like to live in and the one they would most like their own nation to emulate for the 10th straight year. This is one of the main findings of the 13th Annual ASDA’A BCW Arab Youth Survey released today.
This year’s study, conducted by global research and analytics company PSB Insights, polled 3,400 young Arabs, aged 18 to 24 years, in 50 cities and territories in 17 Arab states from 6th – 30th June 2021, with the cohort being equally split between men and women.
Nearly half of young Arabs (47 percent) selected the UAE as their favourite place to live, more than double the number of votes the poll’s second-ranked country, the US received. Almost the same proportion (46 percent) said the UAE was the country they most wanted their own to be like, followed by the US (28 percent), Canada and Germany (each chosen by 12 percent of interviewees) and France (11 percent).
The UAE’s growing economy and the wide range of opportunities it offers were cited by nearly a third (28 percent) of the Arab youth, with the country’s clean environment, safety and security, and generous salary packages also ranked highly among the characteristics they most associate with the country.
Commenting on the survey, Sunil John, President, MENA, BCW and Founder of ASDA’A BCW said that its findings will be particularly gratifying as the UAE celebrates its half-centennial this year and looks forward to the next 50 years of its prosperity and success.
“With the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic now receding thanks to the leadership’s proactive efforts, and Expo 2020 Dubai underway amidst huge fanfare, a spirit of positivity and optimism is clearly detectable in this year’s findings, while the trust of Emirati youth in their nation’s economic vision remains universally high,” he said.
He referred that the Emirati respondents also acknowledged the UAE’s efforts to promote gender equality, with more than eight in 10 saying that men and women have the same rights and equal access to employment; again, this is far above the regional average.
Arab youth in MENA region overall were surprisingly hopeful and optimistic about the future, according to the survey with nearly two-thirds (60 percent) saying their best days lay ahead of them. In the UAE, 90 percent of Emirati youth said their ‘best days lie ahead’.
While nearly two-thirds (62 percent) of Emirati youth said they expected to have a better life than their parents, a staggering 99 percent said their country’s economy was heading in the right direction, up from 97 percent last year. Moreover, all the young Emirati men and women polled this year said their voice mattered to the country’s leadership, another inspiring finding to mark the nation’s Jubilee year.