Pioneering women shaping the future of finance in the UAE

Pioneering women shaping the future of finance in the UAE

The Ministry of Finance employs majority Emirati females, amounting to 60% of its total workforce, 57% of its leadership, and 81% of the youth.

The Ministry sets a remarkable model of Emirati women’s contribution to supporting infrastructure projects and sustainable development goals, and how women enrich sustainable development goals with their experiences, while working internationally to develop cooperation with various emerging and developing economies. This was made possible due greatly to the support of the wise leadership and H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women's Union, President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, and Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation, the “Mother of the Nation”.

On the ninth anniversary of Emirati Women’s Day, which is held this year under the theme ‘’We Collaborate for Tomorrow'', the Ministry of Finance reiterates its commitment to increase women’s participation, build and develop their capabilities to ensure expanding their developmental role, and strengthening their position on a regional and international scale. In 2019, the Ministry attained the Best Federal Entity in Support of Gender Balance at the Level of Ministries Award in the UAE. It also contributed to the establishment of the UAE Gender Balance Council, cooperating with it in a study that lists the budgets allocated for gender balance. The Ministry coordinates its efforts with the Council regarding its projects with international financial organizations, such as the International Monetary Fund, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, and the World Bank.

Emirati women enrich the Ministry’s work, each within the specialization of their respective department.

Mariam Al Amiri, Assistant Undersecretary of the Government Financial Management Sector, said:

“The theme We Collaborate for Tomorrow, which marks the ninth anniversary of Emirati Women’s Day, highlights the importance of teamwork in building a nation in which women hold leadership positions in the financial sector and represent the UAE in international engagements. Equipped with highly specialized financial certificates and with experience in government initiatives, women actively participate in developing policies, setting strategic plans, following up on their implementation, proposing draft laws and regulations, following up the preparation of the draft budget and its implementation, setting work plans, following up on their achievements and performance results, and proposing procedures that contribute to improved and efficient performance.''

‘’Emirati women’s tasks include handling assets, accounts, regulations, financial laws, accounting standards and government procurement, participating in negotiations, as well as developing policies and job descriptions and improving performance to raise the efficiency of human resources. They are also engaged in restructuring and performance management systems in the federal government, dealing with the planning, implementation, and supervision of raising financial efficiency and government cash flows, aimed at advancing sustainable development in the UAE, in implementation of government directives and national strategies, such as the UAE Centennial 2071. Emirati women have been able to make all these achievements in record time, since the establishment of the UAE by the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, as we now enjoy the support of the wise leadership and the “Mother of the Nation”, H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak.”

As a model of Emirati women with remarkable professional achievements, Al Amiri has previously worked on preparing and supervising human resources policies and procedures in all federal entities, establishing the first human resources department at the Ministry of Finance, setting up and amending the organizational structure of the Ministry of Finance, and preparing the first human resources law in the federal government. She was also the first woman to hold the position of director of department at the Ministry of Finance, and the first woman to hold the position of assistant undersecretary in the federal government.

Thuraiya Hamid Alhashmi, Director of International Financial Relations and Organizations Department, and the first Emirati and Arab woman to join the Board of Directors of the New Development Bank, said:

“As Emirati women, we aim to play our role in advancing development to support economic growth by deploying innovation to face global challenges, contributing to the development of sustainable financing solutions and advanced digital infrastructure, as well as cooperation and partnership between the public and private sectors. In my work, I prepare for negotiations to enter into Double Taxation Avoidance Agreements and memorandums of understanding to enhance the country’s position in the finance industry, forge agreements to protect and encourage investment, and promote financial and economic cooperation with countries, organizations, development funds, regional and international financial institutions, and follow up on the G20 work supervised by the Ministry, in addition to many other tasks.”

Azza AlSuwaidi, Director of Government Revenue Department, believes that her mission is to shape future skills, show perseverance, keep up with scientific developments, and benefit from artificial intelligence technology, blockchain, and others. She is proud of her contribution to the efforts of transferring knowledge to employees of federal entities with regard to revenue collection and development, developing a system for preparing and reviewing policies and procedures related to government revenues, preparing annual and periodic federal government revenue forecasts, defining the government revenue cycle, setting the target for government revenues at the level of economic sectors and federal entities, and designing mechanisms for national revenue sharing, studying proposals for common federal and local fees, preparing the necessary studies and recommendations regarding government revenues and sustained resources development opportunities, and developing proposals for imposing, amending or cutting federal government service fees and managing franchise fees in coordination with stakeholders.

Abeer Ali Alabdooli, Director of Macro Fiscal Policy Department, said that young Emirati women will have the opportunity to participate in building the country in the future, and that the support and opportunities given by the wise leadership to Emirati women, as well as the supervision of H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, consolidates the presence of women as partners in development to succeed in exceeding ambitions through their leading role, driven by their commitment to making achievements at the local and global levels.

She added:

“We have to return the favor to our country, which has given us everything. As the future builders who have learning tools and promising opportunities, young Emirati women will spare no effort to serve their country.”

Abeer touched on her work at the Ministry of Finance, where she participates in supervising the Macro Fiscal Policy Department, by building statistical economic models through financial data collected at the national level, macroeconomic analysis of all expenditures and sources of revenue, the development of the overall financial framework for the medium and long term, following up on global competitiveness indicators related to the work of the ministry, preparing the necessary reports, defining the framework for financial risk management, in addition to supervising the financial policies coordination department, in which UAE financial data is collected, aligned and prepared, in cooperation with the UAE governments, then published in accordance with international standards. Her work also includes developing financial reports as per the requirements of international and local financial institutions, preparing and following up on the work and secretariat of the Government Financial Policy Coordination Council and its decisions, as well as representing the Ministry in the meetings of specialized committees on financial reports and statements.

Azza Ali Aljassmi, Director of Government Communications Department, believes that the empowerment of Emirati women began with H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, and it was Her Highness’ continuous support that culminated in pioneering achievements for projects led by the daughters of the nation, which contribute to achieving the vision of the UAE and strengthening its global status.

Azza Aljassmi said:

“Emirati women have also proven their presence in various vital sectors in the country, as they are pioneers in government financial work, and I testify to this through my work in the Ministry of Finance. It’s evident from the tasks, roles, and responsibilities that my female colleagues perform, whether in leadership, specialized, or administrative positions. My fellow Emirati women and I work effortlessly towards a common goal – ensuring a sustainable financial future for the UAE.”

Azza Aljassmi has been at the Ministry of Finance since 2014, with more than 13 years of experience in the field of communication in various sectors. She develops communication studies and strategies, based on involving the public in the decision-making process to develop government financial work through effective participation in various transformational projects, and employing strategic partnerships to enhance the country’s global position. She launched several communication initiatives that achieved exceptional results that were reflected in government performance indicators, in addition to managing communication during financial crises, thus achieving achievements at the individual and institutional levels.

Fatima AlSheikh, Director of Tax Policies and Legislations Department, said:

“Working at the Ministry of Finance allows Emirati women to actively contribute to building the country’s economy. In my role, I participate in preparing, proposing, and reviewing tax policies that support the UAE's financial, economic, and social policy directions, in coordination with the Ministry’s International Tax Department and with the concerned federal and local authorities. I look forward to effectively contributing to achieving the Ministry’s strategic objectives by employing the technical and professional skills that I have acquired in developing tax and financial policies.”

Fatima AlSheikh specialized in economics and finance, where she obtained a Bachelor’s degree from the American University of Sharjah, and a Master’s degree in International Economic Policy from the Sciences Po Paris School of International Affairs. She acquired professional skills in the banking sector by working in the public and private sectors.

Noora Ayoob Mohammad, Director of the Internal Audit Office, addressing the new generation of Emirati women, said:

“Be brave, curious, and passionate about your work. Use your skills and knowledge to make a difference in the world. Be proud of your heritage and culture, and use your voice to inspire other women to pursue their dreams.”

Noora has held her position at the Ministry of Finance since 2022, and has more than 18 years of experience in internal auditing, risks, governance, and compliance in the government sector. During her work as Director of the Internal Audit Office, she has been able to support the Ministry in obtaining internal audit quality assurance certificate.

Noora takes pride in serving her country, and believes that Emirati women can make a real difference in the world by joining the profession they love. She said:

“For me, working at the Ministry of Finance as an internal auditor, makes a real difference in the world, as it is a noble profession that gives young women the opportunity to learn skills and build relationships with influential people for a prosperous and secure future in the UAE.”

News Source: Emirates News Agency

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