UAE Tops the Forbes Middle East 100 Most Powerful Businesswomen List

  • Publish date: Friday، 10 February 2023 Last update: Thursday، 09 March 2023
UAE Tops the Forbes Middle East 100 Most Powerful Businesswomen List

UAE has always spoken about and encouraged women's empowerment. Forbes has released the top 100 Most Powerful Businesswomen of 2023 and UAE leads the list with 15 businesswomen, with the top position in the list being an Emirati businesswoman, Hana Al Rostamani, Group CEO of First Abu Dhabi Bank.

The 15 UAE businesswomen who made the 2023 Forbes Middle East list are:

1. Hana Al Rostamani

Ranking: 1st

Hana Al Rostamani is the group CEO of First Abu Dhabi Bank. She was the first female CEO of FAB in 2021. The bank is the biggest in the United Arab Emirates, with $312.4 billion in total assets as of September 2022. Al Rostamani also serves as the head of the Global Council on Sustainable Development Goals and is on the boards of the Institute of International Finance and MasterCard Advisory.

2. Raja Easa Al Gurg

Ranking: 2nd

Al Gurg Chairperson & Managing Director of Easa Saleh Al Gurg Group (ESAG). Al Gurg has worked at ESAG for more than 30 years, over the organization's more than 60-year history. In the fourth quarter of 2022, ESAG established Al Gurg Distribution and Al Gurg Joinery. Al Gurg was also chosen in 2022 to serve as Heriot-Watt University Dubai's Honorary Pro-Chancellor.

3. Maryam Al Suwaidi

Ranking: 11th

On October 10, 2021, a federal decree named Al Suwaidi CEO of SCA, made her the first female to hold this post in the GCC. Al Suwaidi became the first Emirati woman to obtain this designation when she was recognized by the Financial Action Task Force on September 19, 2021, as an assessor expert in evaluating anti-money laundering and terrorism financing systems.

4. Raja Al Mazrouei

Ranking: 24th

Raja Al Mazrouei is the Managing Director and Acting CEO of Etihad Credit Insurance (ECI). Al Mazrouei joined the ECI board in January 2022 and was appointed managing director in November of that same year. She also accepted the interim CEO position in January 2023. She has over 20 years of expertise in the IT and financial services industries.

5. Aisha Bin Bishr

Ranking: 29th

Aisha is the Vice Chairwoman of Emaar Development. In December 2020, Bin Bishr stepped into her present position. She served as the founding general director of Smart Dubai, where she oversaw the development of the Smart City Index—the first benchmark for the implementation of smart cities—in collaboration with the ITU and the UN, before joining Emaar Development. She was also a non-executive director at Emaar Properties. In addition, Bin Bishr serves on the boards of Arab Financial Services and the University of Wollongong in Dubai.

6. Suzanne Al Anani

Ranking: 36th

Al Anani is the CEO of Dubai Aviation Engineering Projects (DAEP). She has worked for DAEP for almost 20 years.

7. Saeeda Jaffar

Ranking: 40th

Saeeda is the Senior Vice President & Group Country Manager—GCC of the company Visa joined in the year 2021. Moreover, Jaffar is a trustee on the Kuwait University board of trustees.

8. Dalya Al Muthanna

Ranking: 41st

Al Muthanna started working for General Electric Company in 2008 in the company's Experienced Commercial Leadership Program. Beginning in January 2021, she began serving in her present role as the President of U.A.E. and Global Chief Strategy & Operations, at GE International Markets.

9. Tayba Al Hashemi

Ranking: 46th

Al Hashemi is the CEO of ADNOC Sour Gas, one of the biggest producers of granulated sulfur worldwide and one of the biggest processors of sour gas globally. The first of the initial two female CEOs selected to head ADNOC's operational enterprises is Al Hashemi, who started her career at ADNOC in 2002.

10. Rola Abu Manneh

Ranking: 55th

Abu Manneh assumed her position as CEO—U.A.E for Standard Chartered Bank in 2018, becoming the first Emirati woman to head a bank in the U.A.E. 

11. Najla Al Midfa

Ranking: 58th

Al Midfa is the CEO of Sharjah Entrepreneurship Center (Sheraa) since 2018. Sheraa is a government organization that offers initiatives to support entrepreneurs. Al Midfa serves as the vice chair of Young Arab Leaders, a member of the Advisory Committee for the U.A.E.-UK Business Council, and a director on the board of Dana Gas, among other positions.

12. Nadia Zaal

Ranking: 63rd

In 2008, Zaal cofounded Zaya, a partnership between Assas and Tasameem Real Estate. ZUHA island, Hameni Tower, Al Barari Residences, Zaya Hotel Living Al Barari, Zaya Early Learning Center, and FIVE Palm Jumeirah Hotel are some of the initiatives Zaya has undertaken. In addition, Zaal serves as the director of FIVE Global Holdings and the CEO of the $2 billion family-owned Al Barari project.

13. Hind bin Khirbash

Ranking: 73rd

Hind bin Khirbash works as CEO at Emirates National Investment (ENI). In Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and Ras Al Khaimah, ENI has finished a number of residential and business projects under bin Khirbash's direction, including Churchill Towers Dubai, ENI Coral Tower, and Burj Al Shams.

14. Muna Al Mehairi

Ranking: 81st

Al Mehairi is the CEO of Fertil since January 2020. Prior to this, Al Mehairi was employed by ADNOC Onshore, where she held the positions of senior vice president of strategy and business support as well as senior vice president of terminal and pipeline operations.

15. Amna Al Owais

Ranking: 96th

Amna Al Owais is the Chief Registrar at DIFC Courts. Al Owais is in charge of managing operations and quality while overseeing the judicial officers and registry personnel working in the courts. In 2009, she directed the establishment of the DIFC Courts Pro Bono Program.

Click here to view the full list of the Middle East’s 100 Most Powerful Businesswomen 2023.