Complex Made Simple

More jobs, more money: MENA countries hiring this year

The MENA region is booming with opportunities and markets are optimistic. Employers are looking to add bright new talent on company payroll and, similarly, job aspirants are hoping to grab lucrative job offers.

Online job advertising has gone up significantly. According to latest data findings released by job portal, more than 32,000 fresh job positions were up for grabs between January and March.

In such a scenario, if you’re on the lookout for job opportunities in MENA, then it is fitting to provide a well-rounded summary of how much things are looking up across job sectors in different countries of the region.

We give you a round-up below:

United Arab Emirates

The jobs forecast in the UAE for this year is predicted to be quite strong. Hiring activity across different industries is looking north, all thanks to the continually increasing number of projects which are in the works throughout the country.

This scenario, especially in light of Expo 2020, is poised to only get better. Number of vacancies is likely to increment, especially in the following sectors: healthcare, education, and telecommunication.

According to the 2017 Hays Salary and Employment Report, up to 72 per cent employers are looking to up headcount in companies. As far as salaries are concerned, they could remain the same or be hiked less than or up to five per cent.

The demand for bilingual (English and Arabic speaking) recruits, and those with international work experience is expected to be very high.


The country is fast projecting itself as one of the frontrunners in the GCC region, particularly owing to its developmental pursuits. Taking into account that Qatar is gearing up to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup, the country’s development is pressing forward the job market.

For those looking to settle and work in Qatar, the transport sector is booming with opportunities, and so is the healthcare sector. As many as seven new hospitals are set to open their doors by year-end.

Employment avenues are also expected to open in the entertainment, food and beverages, retail, and hospitality circuits, what with numerous mall projects poised to decorate the country’s skyline.

As far as salary increments are concerned, the GCC Salary Increase Survey predicts salaries could go up by as much as 4.5 per cent this year (versus 3.6 per cent last year).


According to the budget statement made by the country, Oman’s private sector is expecting 12,000 to 13,000 new jobs. According to the figures obtained from the National Center of Statistics and Information, 222,000 Omanis in 2016 worked in the private sector.

It further stated that the job opportunities that are expected in the private sector will be established via investment projects, which have economic returns.

On the other hand, public sector opportunities will be limited in Oman due to the sharp decline in oil prices, coupled with an increase in salaries and wages. During the first half of 2017, the privatisation of Muscat Electricity Distribution was to commence, which would lead to the opening up of many job opportunities.


The Egyptian economy is striving to get back to its initial glory by improving its external position. The government is also trying to ease the frustration that has been brewing amidst the population who has had to deal with the government’s measures.

It was the deteriorating purchasing power combined with downbeat sentiments amongst the consumers, which caused the lukewarm performance of the economy in the second quarter of FY 2016-17. Tourism is expected to grow steadily in the region and thus open opportunities in the sector.

The government has rolled out strategies that re focused on Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME’s). The manufacturing industry is set to increase its base and therefore the government has set an annual growth target of nine per cent which will result in the creation of three million jobs by the end of the decade.

Since unemployment is major issue in the country, the government plans to rejuvenate the industrial sector to tackle the problem of youth unemployment.


Bahrain has seen a steady rise in the Tourism industry and this has in retaliation led to a demand in the retail sector.

According to the Economic Development Board (EDB) the tourism industry accounts for six per cent of the GDP and it will expand at the compound annual growth rate of 4.8 per cent thus generating an annual revenue by 2020 of $1bn.

According to a survey conducted by Monster, Bahrain witnessed nine per cent increase in employment opportunities. Amongst the various sectors, the highest paying jobs remain in the financial services with professionals being paid $170,000 yearly.

Sales also remains a major booming sector as high number of recruitments are taking place in the various industries, driving need for experienced sales personnel.

Saudi Arabia

The announcement of Vision 2030 bought about many changes across Saudi Arabia as the government took steps to diversify the economy from oil-based one.

Mining has become a major project for the government wherein a major infrastructure has been put into place in the Ras al-Khair city, doubling the output, thus generating higher jobs in the sector.

With respect to IT, Saudi Arabia will lead the Middle East IT spending in 2017, with an investment of $7.5 billion in technologies such as big data, cloud based computing etc. It will open doors for IT based jobs and making way for specialised IT sectors.

Saudi Arabia has the potential to become the hub for logistical services. It holds 43 per cent of the lGCC logistics market and plans to further it in the coming years, opening more jobs in the sector. The government aims to create more than 450,000 jobs in the private sector, thus making a non-oil based economy.


For the country, the economy has been fairly steady in the start of 2017. Job vacancies decreased from 93,403 in January 2017 to 89,104 in February 2017.

The technology sector saw great boom in 2016 and it is only expected to grow with mergers and acquisitions happening at an all-time high. Israel has been dubbed as the start-up nation, and therefore there is a high requirement for employees in the start-up scene.

According to Glassdoor data, the top trending jobs remain in the tech-related field such as that of Java Developers, Data Scientists and Software Engineer along with System Administrators.

Another industry that has been flourishing in Israel is the 3-D printing industry. Roughly 40 per cent of 3-D printers world-wide are manufactured in Israel, thus making this industry a sought after one by job seekers.

Being a technology-driven country the health sector too is experiencing a boom in what is termed as digital-health sector. The job trends in this sector are set to increase wherein big pharma and healthcare systems will be joining hands to provide better health care with an emphasis on personalised medicine.

Thus in general, Israel will see a high number of requirements in tech-related industries in 2017.