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Abu Dhabi tops list of best cities to live and work in

posted on 24/07/2012: 2758 views

Abu Dhabi has topped a list of the best cities in which to live and work across the Middle East, pipping both Dubai and Sharjah to the top spot.

The capital of the UAE was polled as the top city to make home after examining a range of factors, including wealth, quality of life, labour rights, culture and ease of doing business, according to a survey by, the region-wide job website, and YouGov, the international research and consulting organisation.

The top five cities in the Arab world to live in are: Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Manama and Muscat, according to the "Top Cities of the Middle East" survey.

"These top the list of the most pleasant places to live in the Middle East and North Africa," said Bernard Menettrier, the general manager at "The respondents rated their own city as the way they view the balance between their job and the rest of their time."

He added that about 4,000 of the 11,000 jobs currently available on were based in the UAE.

Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah scored highly across most of the categories in the survey, including law enforcement, public utilities, transport, low traffic congestion, entertainment venues and education.

The survey found that residents of Dubai claim to have a high overall quality of life, with 73 per cent of those surveyed ranking their lifestyle as either "good" or "excellent", while Abu Dhabi's residents ranked it second with 70 per cent. People are most dissatisfied with the quality of life in Beirut and Damascus, with Algiers a close third.

The poll was conducted online from June 24 until July 4, as the situation in Syria deteriorated.

It covered more than 12 countries in the Middle East and North Africa region, involving 9,038 respondents, of which a sample size of 6,013 was used to collate the results.

The survey found that job availability across the region was considered to be average in most cities, boding ill for a region with a burgeoning youth population.

"We are convinced that entrepreneurship is a key way to bridge the gap in employment," said Mr Menettrier. "There are few cities that rank high on entrepreneurship, innovation and for little red tape."

Respondents said that the possibility of employment was highest in Riyadh, with 49 per cent stating that the availability of jobs was either "good" or "excellent".

Doha and Jeddah were the second and third best cities for employment prospects, followed by Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Beirut was deemed the city with the lowest employment prospects.

Four out of 10 respondents in Manama said the city was excellent in terms of affordability of living. Riyadh and Sharjah were also considered affordable, while Amman and Beirut were the most expensive cities, according to their residents.

Residents of Tunis rated their city highly for equality among genders, whereas Kuwait City was regarded as having the least fair treatment of all nationalities, followed by Riyadh and Jeddah, where tolerance was deemed lowest. – The National


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