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Tue 20 Oct 2015 02:38 PM

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Kuwait named world's worst country for expats to live and work

Saudi Arabia also ranks poorly in Expat Insider 2015 poll of more than 14,300 respondents worldwide

Kuwait named world's worst country for expats to live and work

Kuwait is the least popular destination for expats to live and work in the world, according to a new global survey compiled by InterNations.

The Expat Insider 2015 poll of more than 14,300 expatriates representing 170 nationalities and living in 195 countries ranked Kuwait 64th out of 64 destinations covered.

Saudi Arabia also ranked poorly at 61st while Qatar was also one of the least popular countries at 54th.

The survey, which was topped by Ecuador, Mexico and Malta, asked expats to rate their experiences for Quality of Life, Ease of Settling In, Working Abroad, Family Life, Personal Finance, and Cost of Living.

The most popular Gulf destination is Bahrain, which ranked 17th globally, followed by the UAE (19th) and Oman (24th).

In the UAE, the survey showed that three-fifths of all working expats are generally satisfied with their job, and 62 percent find their career prospects appealing.

It added that five out of nine expats in the UAE are happy with their personal financial situation, but 42 percent find living there expensive.

The affordability of housing in particular is considered problematic by 60 percent of respondents while worldwide, only 42 percent of the expatriates criticise this factor in their respective host country.

In Saudi Arabia, adapting to the culture appears to be very problematic with almost half the expats (49 percent) saying they don't find settling down easy and 44 percent don't feel at home in the local culture.

Malta ranked first in the Expat Insider 2015 survey for overall job satisfaction, with seven in ten expats generally satisfied and 27 percent even completely satisfied, compared to a global average of only 16 percent. In terms of career prospects, only the USA and the United Kingdom ranked higher.

Sweden, Norway and Malta occupied the top rankings when it comes to work-life balance, while Saudi Arabia, India and Kuwait were at the bottom.

Malte Zeeck, founder and co-CEO of InterNations, said: “Finding the perfect balance between work and life can prove to be an ordeal for many expats. Countries such as Norway, Finland or Denmark provide ideal conditions for expats with the world’s shortest working weeks of about 40 hours. At the other end of our rankings, foreign residents in Uganda, Nigeria, the Philippines and Panama are working up to ten more hours per week than their counterparts in Scandinavia.”

According to InterNations, the average expat works a 42-hour week, with 86 percent in full-time and 14 percent in part-time positions.

Owen Rodick 4 years ago

I can confirm that, apart from Oman, I have been to every GCC country. Although I didn't find good work ethics in any of these countries but Bahrini's were so much better, You could see local Bahrinis working hard and being more open and friendly, Kuwait and Saudi were worst, In Saudi I felt like in a concrete jungle. Nil work ethics, kuwaitis were good at work but their attitute was the worse towards other nationalities,

Knox 4 years ago

I've been in several GCC countries and Kuwait is by far the worst. Work and life ratio is reasonable as I work 40 hours per week. However, the racism, awful driving and extremely incompetent law enforcement make outings a stressful situation.

Muhammad Kausar Shinwari 4 years ago

My personal experience with Dubai is very good . I never feel any sort of discrimination Bcz of being expat . We surely are enjoying a good life with peace & security .
Muhammad Kausar Shinwari

James 4 years ago

Having spent 7 years in Kuwait I totally agree
The government wants to reduce the numbers makes it hard to get simple things like a driving licence allows big companies to break labour laws everything is stacked against the expat
rents are expensive there is nothing socially to do except shop or eat out its not a family friendly place either
We have to have skill tests DNA taken etc but don't do it to your own citizens
So Kuwait if you want to attract the great talent you need to make us feel welcome and treat us with respect

Merwin F. 4 years ago

Been here in Kuwait for 20 years. No worse treatment than I could expect in other or my own country. Most local people & expats are nice to each other. Decent health, education & housing facilities. Good public infrastructure. There's social and religious freedom. Peace & security amongst the best in the region. Savings prospects are fairly decent despite living with a family of 5. If you're a law abiding citizen with a reasonable lifestyle, I think this is a good place to live & work in. Just my thoughts, you're entitled to yours....

Bader alaredhi 4 years ago

Oky,why you are coming to our country, go back to your country and work there, you come here for money , dont think we will respect who leave his country justt for money ,,, go back to your mom place,,

Cash 4 years ago

I don't agree.....I have been here 11 years and have loved every moment I spent here. If you guys don't like it here .....please leave ...this place has got the highest concentration of educated citizens . Who respect you, than any other GCC country. I have lots of Kuwaiti friends and they are much more civilized than the other GCC nationals . I have never faced any racism here and have found kuwaitees very helpful and understanding . My mantra is respect the rules and regulations of the country you live in and you will love the plàce .

ahmed 4 years ago

Bottom-line is this, historically when a dominant nationality feels that they have ‘lost control’ of their society they automatically attack the nearest ‘underdog’ and in Kuwait’s case it is the expat. It is so pathetic listening to Kuwaitis constantly complain about their government but are afraid to raise their voices to change the situation. Further, what will eventually happen is this ‘expat’ war that the Kuwaitis are waging will backfire on themselves, actually it already has in the business arena. You will notice that when there is an expansion plan in the GCC, companies generally opt out of going to Kuwait – they will go to UAE, Saudi, Oman, Qatar, but not Kuwait. Kuwait will never advance until they adapt a more ‘inclusive’ policy like the UAE.

Mohammad 4 years ago

It is veary easy if you dont like leaving in said Kuwait.
Leav it

sarah harding 4 years ago

Kuwaiti's should be proud of their achievement.. Ranked 64..thats the best news to come out of Kuwait since 1991.

Also not surprised by low standing of UAE.
High rents, high school/college fees, high Telecommunication charges,high water and electricity charges, higher charges for clothes-food-electronics, poor Service oriented services,disappointing government services, backward judiciary, quality of life issues etc, rank it low compared to other countries. Just goes to show that bigger isn't better.