Expats demand higher wages in UAE

Published:  18 Sep at 4 PM
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Tagged: Dubai, UAE
UAE employers are being told by expats that they must pay higher wages in order to attain their services.

A recent survey of 75 Dubai-based companies found that four in 10 human resource directors said that prospective candidates’ salary demands are above what the UAE’s market levels of remuneration are. Slightly more than half of the companies surveyed said that salary expectations were in accordance with market trends, while five per cent said that candidates’ expectations were less than the market average.

Among the reasons behind expats setting their pay packet expectations higher is a dearth of local talent, a long-standing problem in the UAE. Gareth El Mettouri, associate director at Robert Half Middle East, which carried out the survey, said that a skills shortage coupled with a talent gap means employers have to look outside of the UAE.

He went on to explain that when prospective employers consider the Dubai, they think it’s an extremely expensive place to live. He said that housing is the biggest expense, but that it has fallen in the last two years. However, he added that the full expat package which was previously in place has now been scrapped.

Firms have been trying to reduce their costs in recent times by taking away allowances like accommodation and cars which played a major part in the boom years. However, although a drop in rents has led to lowering headline inflation figures, Dubai is still the Middle East’s priciest city to live in.
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