Saudi Arabia is expected to generate the maximum number of jobs in the region in 2012, according to recruitment experts in the region.
“Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will lead job creation by a long shot. On average, KSA GDP has grown 5 per cent year-on-year since 1969, with various highs and lows and has always been seen as the engine of the Middle East. I think you will see Bahrain continue to struggle. Bahrain just does not have the same fundamentals that Saudi has nor the critical mass to help push it through the crisis. As well many MNCs have retreated out of Bahrain with no sign of new FDI for the country in sight,” Shane Phillips, Mena Regional Practice Leader – Financial and Professional Services at Stanton Chase, told Emirates 24|7.
According to some experts, Saudi will be joined by countries like Qatar and the UAE in pushing up the market. “Saudi Arabia, followed by Qatar will be at the forefront of job creations taking recent employment trends into account,” said Hasnain Qazi, Middle East Business Manager at Huxley Associates.
“KSA, Qatar and the UAE seem to be the countries with the highest expected growth, which of course will influence the job market positively. In this, one should take into consideration the increased emphasis on nationalization programmes, that give a priority to nationals for several positions, especially in the governmental and semi-governmental sectors (which seem to be leading the way for growth at this period),” explained Konstantina Sakellariou, Partner, Marketing & Operations Director at Stanton Chase.
The current trends show that Saudi and the UAE have seen the biggest annual job growth rate. The latest October 2011 index highlights from Monster.com show that (from October of last year to October of 2011), online opportunities expanded in six of seven countries over the period of one year. Of this, KSA (up 49 per cent) led all the countries in the annual growth rate. UAE (up 7 per cent) led all sectors in monthly growth.
Bahrain remained unchanged from September levels (down 11 per cent). Bahrain also recorded the steepest annual decline among countries. Qatar (up 22 per cent) also saw monthly recruitment activity constant at September level and Kuwait (up 15 per cent) registered the first positive month-on-month growth since June’11; up 3 per cent over September.