UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. Sharjah: Huda Al-Matroushi is one of the few Emirati women who have ventured into the male dominant world of car repairing. Matroushi is a proud mechanic and business owner of an automobile repair shop in the emirate of Sharjah.
Talking about her passion for cars, 36-year-old Matroushi said, “I like cars, their models and their details. I like sports cars, I like luxurious cars, even normal non-luxurious cars, I love them all!”
Matroushi is very passionate about vehicles and has loved them since she was a young girl. Soon, she decided to turn her passion into a profession. However, she had to face a lot of doubt and despair from her family. Matroushi’s father doubted her survival in such a fiercely competitive and dominant male industry. But, the Emirati was confident about her success. Her determination, knowledge and hard work has won her the trust of her male employees, families and customers.
In a statement to Reuters Matroushi’s male employee, Mohammed Halawani said, “It was strange to see a woman in charge of the garage. But after I joined and we started working I saw her telling me to disassemble certain parts and assemble others. She was clear about the instructions she gave and that came from her experience”.
Women entrepreneurship in the UAE
Women constitute about 70% of UAE graduates and 44% of the total workforce. Recognizing their immense value towards economic development, the UAE is offering greater gender equality for female entrepreneurship ventures than any other country in the region.
The country in line with its Sustainable Development Goals aims to be one of the top 25 countries globally for gender equality. The nation provides opportunities through the Women Entrepreneurship Summit MENA, a strategic platform to grow women in business.
In a recent survey, around 33% of female owned businesses generate an average revenue of $100,000 per year. Whether it is through partnerships with companies such as JP Morgan Chase Foundation or Cherie Blair Foundation, Emirati women have ample opportunities to capitalize on their dreams. Recently, the UAE released a new legislation that came into effect last month stipulating all UAE-based companies to have at least one woman on their Board of Directors.
It is with this hope that Matroushi envisions transforming her single garage ship into a large repair center and aspires to open her chain of garages across the UAE.