August 14, 2022

How Workforce Shortages Could Affect GCC Tourism Growth

There has been a growing concern about the shortage of skilled professionals in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). And it poses a great risk to the GCC’s position as a global tourism hub.

The workforce shortage, as well as restricted technology investment and sustainable development, may have an adverse impact on the GCC tourism sector’s near-term growth. To create a competitive tourist industry, governments must invest in local workforce development and implement innovative strategies. As the GCC continues to pursue its tourism targets, it must also focus on the "softer" aspects of tourism advancement, such as people, digitalization, and viability.

The lack of manpower and technical skill sets

According to data from the MEED Projects tracker, there are more than $143 billion in recreational and hospitality projects are under construction in the GCC. There is a substantial pipeline for future projects, and more than $115 billion is in various planning stages, emphasizing the anticipated rise in the need for highly skilled manpower supply in the UAE and other regional parts of the GCC.

As the pandemic caused massive labor shortages in the travel and tourism industry globally, there is a restrained demand as the industry recovers but not all workers may decide to return. It is why the primary issue now is not the lack of opportunities but rather a lack of workforce and technical proficiency.

By 2026, the hospitality industry will require nearly 90,000 skilled professionals. With this at stake, policymakers must lead the development of local competence, which can be accomplished by defining adequate training establishments and university programs. Training and retaining the right people is also an important part of the process, which countries like the UAE make possible through policy initiatives and permanent residency reforms.

Adopting aggressive strategies to attract and retain new-age travelers could also be a good idea, which includes emphasizing the destination’s sustainability, providing personalized and interactive travel options, and expanding the use of analytics.

Incorporating Efforts Moving Forward

Even before COVID-19, stakeholders had to adapt immediately, changing approaches and techniques to face the demands presented by the challenges of today. As the travel industry steadily develops into a vital sector for the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries’ economic vitality, there is an infrastructure effect in the region as massive infrastructure expansion is anticipated.

As GCC tourism continues to grow exponentially and with the current concern of workforce shortages, policymakers should incorporate stabilization efforts moving forward. Provide more training opportunities to enhance technical skillset and establish enticement programs to encourage workers to return to work. In moving forward, the government must define a more localized, highly interrelated, and inclusive concept of success. In achieving rapid global transformation, a progressive cycle of repair, re-evaluation, and reprogramming will be required.

As GCC gradually recovers from the workforce shortages and employs viable opportunities for its people, having partner labour supply companies in abu dhabi, particularly us in World Star Manpower would be a fitting option to utilize. We are pioneers in offering professional manpower supply services to almost all sectors in the UAE. During the previous decades, we have delivered high-quality human resources in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and the UAE.