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

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.


Turkey on brink of recession as economy collapses

Updated 13 August 2020

Turkey on brink of recession as economy collapses

  • Consumer debt has increased by 25 percent to more than $100 billion in the past three months

JEDDAH: President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s popularity is plunging in lockstep with Turkey’s collapsing economy and the country is on the verge of a potentially devastating recession, financial experts have told Arab News.
The value of the Turkish lira has fallen to 7.30 against the US dollar and the central bank has spent $65 billion to prop up the currency, according to the US investment bank Goldman Sachs.
Consumer debt has increased by 25 percent to more than $100 billion in the past three months as the government moved to help families during the coronavirus pandemic, but the result has been a surge in inflation to 12 percent.
With the falling lira and increased price of imported goods, the living standards of many Turks who earn in lira but have dollar debts have fallen sharply.
The economy is expected to shrink by about 4 percent this year. The official unemployment rate remains at 12.8 percent because layoffs are banned, although many experts say the real figures are far higher.
To complete the perfect storm, tourism revenues and exports have been decimated by the pandemic, and foreign capital has fled amid fears over economic trends and the independence of the central bank.
Wolfango Piccoli, of Teneo Intelligence in London, said logic dictated an increase in interest rates but “this is unlikely to happen.”
Piccoli said central bank officials would strive to avoid an outright rate hike at their monetary policy meeting on Aug. 20. “A mix of controlled devaluation and backdoor policies, such as limiting Turkish lira’s liquidity, remains their preferred approach,” he said.
There is speculation of snap elections, and Erdogan’s view is that higher interest rates cause inflation, despite considerable economic evidence to the contrary.