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Fri 18 Dec 2015 01:00 AM

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Gulf jobs market rebounds in November but rate still subdued

Recruitment firm Monster says slowdown reflects impact of low oil prices on regional economies

Gulf jobs market rebounds in November but rate still subdued

Growth in the Gulf jobs market rebounded in November from the big slowdown seen in the previous month but the rate was still lower than witnessed earlier this year as economies in the region continued to be impacted by low oil prices.

According to recruitment firm Monster, its Employment Index grew by 16 percent year-on-year compared to 14 percent in October but was below that registered in the second and third quarters of 2015. 

IT and telecoms led all industry groups for long-term growth in the Middle East while oil and gas recorded the steepest decline year-on-year in the region.

Kuwait and UAE were the top employment generating countries on a year-on-year basis in November while recruitment in Qatar, Bahrain and Oman slowed.

Sanjay Modi, managing director, Monster.com (India, Middle East, South East Asia and Hong Kong), said: “GCC economy growth has slowed down due to the low oil price environment, which has adversely affected growth in the non-oil sectors as well.

"The job market has not been spared either, as revealed by the Monster Employment Index. The year-on-year growth this month has eased considerably as compared to Q2 and Q3 2015, with the oil and gas sector continuing to exhibit the steepest decline in job demand.

"We expect the slowdown in job demand to continue, in line with the International Monetary Fund’s regional economic outlook for the Middle East and Central Asia, which has projected further slowdown in GCC economic growth for the short-term,” he said.

Modi added that the GCC healthcare sector was bucking the downward trend, especially in the UAE where job opportunities were up by 60 percent year-on-year.

Online hiring surpassed the year-ago level in four countries out of the seven monitored by the index, with Kuwait leading the way with 32 percent annual growth in November.

The long-term growth momentum improved in UAE (up 18 percent) and Saudi Arabia (up one percent) also registered positive growth. 

Online recruitment in Oman and Bahrain slowed. Recruitment level matched the year-ago level in Oman while recruitment in Bahrain slipped four percent below the year-ago level. Qatar (down seven percent) recorded the steepest decline year-on-year.

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