First of all, the UI for this game isn't too bad, but I think for newbies the PVP and social tabs should not be on the right side of the mini map, it should be under the mission log. Emotes need to be easier to do as well, and the emote tab should close automatically after the emote is selected. When chatting with people privately, a button should be near the input field so it's easier to select the names of the people. These minor changes can make a big difference on newbies.
Why do you want to move the PvP and social tabs? Leave them where they are, they are completely out of place under the mission log. Newbies should just learn how to do things.
But I second the thing with the emotes. Of course, you can type a semicolon (eg ;dance becomes the dance(mix) emote) and the command of the emote in the chat window for faster access, but no one knows them all.