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The latest survey by the UAE Marriage Fund, a government institution that provides financial assistance to those who want to marry but cannot afford to, showed that 87 percent of respondents blamed high dowries for low marriage rates among Emirati women.The government has imposed a ,000 ceiling on dowries, but many families still demand much more -- in some cases over 5,000.The reasons behind this growing trend of spinsterhood are not entirely clear.UAE planning ministry statistics show that in 1995, only 20 percent of women over 30 were unmarried. Some evidence suggests that excessively high dowries are preventing men without the means from choosing a spouse.And if she insists, he would rather that she do so part-time only."Most men who succeed in their lives have wives who do not work, or do so from home," Mansouri said.Through our extensive profiles, members can learn about each other before meeting in person.

In this case, the fund will give the man money to take a second wife.There are also other reasons why Emirati women are not getting hitched before 30: they are opting for education and a career before settling down.Take Mansouri: he is looking for a wife but says he prefers that she not work.In the UAE, as in many Muslim countries, polygamy is sanctioned by both religion and the law.The Marriage Fund also routinely organises mass marriages to help cut costs and reduce the burden on individual men seeking a wife.

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