Saudization to continue brisk pace, pay hikes of professionals in Kingdom highest in region

Saudi professionals are expected to receive a 2 percent raise in their salaries this year, the highest in the Middle East, according to recruitment specialist Robert Walters. (AFP)
Updated 19 February 2019
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Saudization to continue brisk pace, pay hikes of professionals in Kingdom highest in region

  • ‘Saudi national hiring has doubled in 2018 and we expect this trend will continue into 2019’
  • Jobs in Saudi Arabia were up 111 percent year-on-year, the report’s job index noted

DUBAI: The Kingdom’s Saudization scheme will continue its brisk pace with professionals set to receive the highest pay hikes in the Middle East this year, a survey report from recruitment specialist Robert Walters said on Tuesday.
“Saudi national hiring has doubled in 2018 and we expect this trend will continue into 2019,” the survey added, with firms – encouraged by Saudi Arabia’s increase in total spend for the year – looking to hire locals who already have international experience.
The increased career mobility of job candidates, especially in Saudi Arabia, should also bode well for professionals in the Kingdom, according to Robert Walters, with an expected 2 percent increase in their salaries this year.
Middle East salaries meanwhile will rise by 1 per cent on average, the recruitment specialist’s Middle East Salary Survey 2019 said.
Jobs in Saudi Arabia were up 111 percent year-on-year, the report’s job index noted, while jobs in the UAE rose 38 percent over the previous year.
“Saudi Arabia went through a period of huge change, due to the implementation of the Saudi government’s 2030 visionary plan.
“Two years into this plan and we have already seen huge momentum in the recruitment market, with particular focus on the public health sector. As part of this plan, a large part of the population was mobilised for work and for the first time in some regions and sectors, we saw women in the workplace,” Robert Walters said in the report.
Jason Grundy, Robert Walters managing director for the Middle East, meanwhile, commented that “The growing demand for nationals will continue to dominate the market as many companies aim to comply with nationalisation legislation. As a result, local market knowledge will be a key differentiator for all professionals across the region,”
“The job market in Saudi Arabia will continue to be busy for government roles; we expect the private sector to follow suit and recover in 2019. Sectors such as IT, manufacturing, logistics, finance, banking and education will be key benefactors.”
Grundy however cautioned job candidates to be wary of quick career moves “to avoid permanent damage to their career prospects.


Apple’s Cook to China: keep opening for sake of global economy

Updated 23 March 2019
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Apple’s Cook to China: keep opening for sake of global economy

  • Cook’s comments come as Apple weathers sinking sales in China
  • Despite official pledges and repeated assurances that China would continue to open its markets

BEIJING: Apple chief executive Tim Cook nudged China on Saturday to open up and said the future would depend on global collaboration, as the United States and China remained locked in a bitter trade dispute.
“We encourage China to continue to open up, we see that as essential, not only for China to reach its full potential, but for the global economy to thrive,” Cook said at a China Development Forum in Beijing.
Despite official pledges and repeated assurances that China would continue to open its markets, some analysts worry that its reform project has slowed or even stalled under President Xi Jinping, who has sought greater control over the economy and a bigger role for state-owned firms at the expense of the private sector.
Cook’s comments come as Apple weathers sinking sales in China because of a contracting smartphone market, increasing pressure from Chinese rivals, and slowing upgrade cycles. The company reported a revenue drop of 26 percent in the greater China region during the quarter ending in December.
Before those results came out, in a January letter to investors, Cook blamed the company’s poor China performance on trade tension between the United States and China, suggesting that pressure on the economy was hurting sales in China.