Average Mideast salaries seen rising 7.9% in 2010

Survey shows signs of positive growth for region, number of firms with wage freeze to fall.
By Elsa Baxter
Wed 21 Oct 2009 02:33 PM

Average salaries in the Middle East are set to rise by 7.9 percent in 2010, according to research by the human resource consultancy Hewitt Associates.

Compared to results from the firm’s 2009 survey, when the average salary grew by just 6.9 percent, next year’s results show signs of positive growth in the region.

The results apply only to Middle Eastern companies who have not opted for a salary freeze or salary cut amid the global financial crisis, however, the number of these are also set to fall.

According to the survey of 239 large organisations across the region, the number of firms with a freeze on wages will decline from 42 percent this year to 14 percent in 2010.

A similar trend is also forecast for salary cuts, with the number of companies planning cuts expected to drop from 5.7 percent in 2009 to 1.9 percent next year.

“According to Hewitt’s salary studies across global markets, the Middle East salary projections for 2010 are among the highest in the world,” said Debabrat Mishra, principal and consulting business leader, Hewitt Associates Middle East.

The firm’s annual salary increase survey spoke to businesses in Bahrain, Egypt, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the UAE. It covers 19 different industries, including construction, financial services, IT, and real estate.

Average salary increase for 2009 and projected increases for 2010.

Bahrain2009: 5.4%2010: 6.4%

Egypt2009: 10.3%2010: 10.4%

Kuwait2009: 6.9%2010: 8.0%

Qatar2009: 5.5% 2010: 7.8%

Saudi Arabia2009: 6.5%2010: 6.7%

UAE2009: 5.4% 2010: 6.5%

Source: Hewitt Associates.

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