Are There Jobs For You At The Dubai 2020 Expo?

Are There Jobs For You At The Dubai 2020 Expo?

In 2013, the UAE won the right to host the World Expo in 2020. A mega-event that attracts millions of visitors from various nations, including international organisations and businesses, it will be the first time such an expo will be held in the MEASA region.

Expected to see approximately 25 million visitors, the UAE and Dubai will see a dramatic increase in visitor numbers both during the time it will be running (October 2020 – April 2021) and in the lead up to it.

A demand for many more hotel rooms, a vast pipeline of construction projects underway / planned as well as numerous tourism advancements are needed in order to make such an event a success and it promises to provide a multitude of jobs for both national and international job seekers.

Hiring Intentions

Exact figures for the total number of workers in demand for the event vary with frontier expecting around 300,000 additional workers needed, as opposed to bq who speculate only 230,000. Nonetheless, it is a considerable amount of additional workers needed to fill, workers that will not able to be found just within the UAE or Dubai.


What Industries Are The Most Popular?

Approximately 30 per cent of the new jobs created will be in the construction sector with hiring already begun due to many projects already underway. Skilled positions such as engineers, project managers and technicians are the most sought after positions in the construction industry, according to Guy Rickett, CEO of Cazar.

The huge demand of construction workers will remain that way until the completion of many of the projects right up until 2020. But you can anticipate to see a “ripple effect” within the hospitality and retail sector once these infrastructure projects are completed.

Recruitment of such industries can be expected to blossom from 2018 and right the way up until the end of 2021 Rickett said.

Additionally, with so many visitors expected to come to the region, the tourism sector will create numerous new job opportunities for professionals of all experience levels with jobs such as ticketing agents and air crew anticipating to be in demand as part of a tourism revamp.


As mentioned, construction will see the biggest rise in recruitment due to many facilities requiring to be built.

Faced with rising salary expectations and the insufficient talent supply in their own countries, UAE based hiring organisations are looking outside the GCC for a talented pool of candidates, according to Morgan McKinley’s Salary Report.

Over Dh250 billion is expected to be spent on projects leading up to the Dubai Expo, with some of the main projects beginning construction in the coming months.

Some of these big projects (some are near completion) include:

  • Museum of the Future

o   An innovative environment where visitors will experience cutting edge simulations and demonstrations, due to be completed in 2017.

  • Bluewaters Island

o   A retail, residential, hospitality and entertainment zone, it will boast the worlds tallest Ferris wheel. Construction has already begun n this project, it is estimated to be completed by 2018.

  • Dubai Creek Harbour

o   Three times the size of Downtown Dubai, it is located alongside Dubai Creek and adjacent to Ras Al Khor. It will comprise 3,664 office units, eight million square feet of retail space, 39,000 residential units and 22 hotels with 4,400 rooms.

  • Dubai Theme Parks

o   An attraction for the families, approximately 30% of it is complete.

  • MBR City – District One

The first and second phase of the villas will be handed over in mid 2016 & 2017. A huge residential and hotels area, it is expected to be completed in 2020, just before the expo begins.

  • Mall Of The World

o   One of the most anticipated projects in the region, this whopping $6.8 billion project, once completed, will officially be the largest mall in the world set to contain a theme park, the world’s biggest mall, 100 hotels and a theatre district. Began construction in 2015, it does not anticipate it to be fully completed for another 10 years.



Dubai plans to need approximately 100,000 hotel rooms by the time Expo 2020 begins, in order to cater for the sheer of visitors arriving in the beautiful country. With approximately 65,000 rooms currently available in Dubai, the further 35,000 rooms needed to meet the required demand within the next few years will be either built from scratch or expanded to pre-existing hotels.

It looks like they are well on their way, with reporting a total of 87 new hotels currently underway adding more than 27,000 rooms that will be completed by 2018.

There are a number of expansion projects in place to increase this capacity by a further 23,800 units as well.

Hiring for positions within the hotels can be expected in the months leading up to its opening and as mentioned earlier, this can be expected to be around 2018. 

Other Industries

According to Gulf Business, construction and hospitality are booming industries, but sectors such as banking and tourism saw an increase in 2016 and through to 2017 as well.

This is due to a cautious approach by companies following the recession and greater confidence in the market to begin hiring again. It is also forecasted like this to allow for international companies to move into the area in preparation for the Expo. However, you can anticipate many of the local companies already hiring in preparation for such an event said Sanjay Modi.

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