The Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs have been very helpful. Dubai has had a lot of bad press of late and it seems the Free Zone authorities are keen to come down heavy on companies that think they can just fuck people over and get away with it. Tales of dumped cars are ruined families won’t help attract the necessary talent back to Dubai when the economic crisis is over, they have enjoyed a protracted period of growth and prosperity but the medieval laws regarding finance, lending and debts that have driven people away were not a concern while the economy was going like a Fair. Many didn’t know of this aspect and were shocked to find how exposed they were. So Dubai is currently haemorrhaging skilled people and offering few reasons for them to return - so the best they can do is be seen to hammer companies who abuse the system. The population is shrinking faster than a date in the desert. Many building projects have been cancelled or abandoned, but for some crazy reason other new ones continue to spring up, it would seem it may well take more than a 1001 nights until the moral of this tale sinks in. ‘The World’ series of man made islands never looked that realistic unless your view of the world is similar to that of a drunken pirate but they will look a lot less recognisable as an investment or a luxury hideaway as the ocean erodes them now the finances are all at sea. The bubble has burst and if they hope to blow another one they need to make sure too many people aren’t left with soap in their eyes or a ringing in their ears.
The shysters I worked for were dodgier than a Chinese Rolex – scratch the surface and there will be more whiffy dealings to be found. Aside from the lie factory in Dubai they claim to have offices all over the place, the ‘London’ Agency was no more than a nameplate on a door that belonged to someone else – until they fucked them over too. But the Dubai / Abu Dhabi thing has the potential to blow up in their faces more than anything else. Abu Dhabi Companies often won’t deal with Dubai based agencies and vice versa. The claimed ‘Abu Dhabi office’ is quieter than a lot of the offices still under construction around them. It’s simply a rented bit of cheap space to provide an address with a couple of old computers sitting there, a few days a week some Bunterish lickspittle rattles the keys and makes a few pointless sales calls, the bloke couldn’t sell a bucket of water to a burning man yet they are dumb enough to think they can pull this off. But it’s a dangerous piece of chicanery, aside from the potential embarrassment for Abu Dhabi clients they are also trading under the auspices of a heavyweight Abu Dhabi family as their sponsors, they wont want any bad press and have more than enough power to run them out of town.
In the end I just want the money they owe me. In the long run they have a lot more to loose than I. I am safely back in the UK and will find another job, they however at best could end up finding PR stands for 'Pretty Ropey' or at worst lose their licence to trade. One thing is for sure they’ll feel quite queasy when they see just how vicious the sandworm is when it turns.