MidEast workers set for 5.4% pay rise in 2013 - study

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While employees in Europe are facing harsh austerity measures, their counterparts in the Middle East are likely to see their average pay rise by 5.4 percent this year, with Egyptians set for the highest rise of nearly 10 percent, according to a new study published on Sunday.

The results were part of the latest Total Remuneration survey conducted by global consulting firm Mercer. The research tracked the average pay plans of 570 multinational organisations operating across 76 countries in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

While average wages in Eastern Europe and Western Europe are set to rise by 4.6 percent and 2.6 percent respectively, Middle Eastern employees are set for a 5.4 boost in their average take home pay this year.

Across the MENA region, Algeria is set to see average wage packets rise 6.8 percent, while Morocco ranks at 4.9 percent and Tunisia 5.3 percent. Topping the list is Egypt, where an average raise of ten percent is forecast for 2013.

Across the Gulf area, Jordan is the best performer, with an average rise of 6.5 percent, followed by Saudi Arabia on six percent.

However, Zaid Kamhawi, a spokesperson for Mercer, warned that the study found that an estimated 5 percent of companies are planning to freeze salaries in 2013.

"Companies however are placing less emphasis on inflation rates when budgeting for pay increases, and factoring such variables as relative pay competitiveness, affordability, labour market conditions and confidence in their business outlook,” Kamhawi said.

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