Get to know the first country in the world to officially have a 4 and a half day work week

United Arab Emirates it became the first country in the world to establish a four-and-a-half-day work week at all of its government entities as well as at its central bank.

The authorities also announced that the weekend will be from Saturday to Sunday, and not from Friday to Saturday, as is currently the case in several Arab countries.

The changes, which will begin this coming January 1, are intended to make this Gulf country more attractive for foreign investment, given that it links its working days with those of many world markets.

The official news agency WAM indicated that this new working week aims to “Boost productivity and improve work-life balance.”

The country, added the information service, wants to “improve its position in the global competitiveness of the economic and business sectors.”

This decision guarantees financial and commercial fluidity, as well as economic transactions with countries that follow a weekend from Saturday to Sunday, said the United Arab Emirates.

The changes will also extend to public schools.

On Friday the employees will work just over four hours, until noon. Thus in the afternoon they will be able to perform Muslim prayers on the most important day of the week for the religious community.

The other five countries of the Arab Gulf they have Friday as a holiday.

The private sector, however, will have the option of choosing their own workweek.

“Each company, depending on the sector in which they operate and what suits and best serves their business, can choose the weekend for their employees,” Human Resources Minister Abdulrahman al-Awar told Reuters.

The official opined that a longer weekend will improve employees’ work-life balance. He also pointed out that several Muslim nations, such as Indonesia and Morocco, already have Saturday-Sunday as their weekend.

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