UAE Transitions to New Work Week Schedule that Matches Western World

UAE Aligns work week schedule with western workdays

Effective January 2022, federal government entities of the United Arab Emirates began a new four-and-a-half-day work week with Monday-Thursday workdays running 7:30am to 3:30pm and Friday working hours from 7:30am – 12:00pm. Previously, the UAE work week was five full workdays (Sunday-Thursday).

“The extended weekend comes as part of the UAE government’s efforts to boost work-life balance and enhance social wellbeing, while increasing performance to advance the UAE’s economic competitiveness”, according to a UAE Government news release issued 7 Dec 2021 announcing the change. “The new working week will also bring the UAE’s financial sector into closer alignment with global real-time trading and communications-based transactions such as those driving global stock markets, banks and financial institutions.”

According to a UAE Central Bank circular, banks in the UAE will continue to operate for six days a week, including Fridays, but it is left to individual banks to determine the working hours and days for their administration and back offices.

Banks contacted by DCW generally indicated that their trade finance operations departments have adjusted to maintaining a five-day work week, Monday-Friday.

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