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Job Creation Heating Up in Aerospace, Real Estate and Property Sectors in the GCC

Middle East : 23 June 2011

Aerospace and Aviation is Booming in the GCC Region

Various projects are in the works in the aviation and aerospace industries throughout the GCC, notably in the UAE where Emirates Airlines is headquartered. The airline is part of the Emirates Group and has plans to add 500 staff members to its list of more than 30,000 current employees. These new positions will open up in Dubai at the 90,000 square meter engine repair facility valued at $120 US (or Dh 440.7). Aviation currently accounts for around 25 percent of Dubai’s GDP.

Emirates Airlines state that this new facility will be able to service 300 aircraft annually, effectively serving a portion of their fleet that includes the Airbus A380 and the Boeing 777.

Emirates made this announcement at the Paris Air Show, where other deals involving GCC nations drew attention. Saudi Arabia awarded a $1.7 billion defense deal to Raytheon. The US firm will be involved in upgrading the Kingdom’s current missile defense system.

Etihad Airways of the UAE also firmed up a long-term deal with Rolls Royce worth $360 million for the servicing of the engines on their fleet of Airbus A330 aircraft.

The aviation industry as a whole looks to be on the rise, despite battling higher oil prices and economies still recovering worldwide.

Actual Budget Numbers Show Substantial Government Revenue Increases in Oman

As the 2010 budget numbers are released, it is clear that the Omani government brought in more and spent more than budgeted. Mainly due to higher oil prices, the actual government revenue figures were up 24 percent over budget, reaching RO 7916.5m instead of only RO 6380m. Expenditures also increased to hit RO 7965.3m, an 11 percent increase over the RO 7180m budgeted. These figures were reported by the CBO (or Central Bank of Oman) in its Annual Report.

Growth in the price of crude oil throughout international markets resulted in these increases, which were 17.3 percent (revenues) and 7.2 percent (expenditures) over the 2009 figures. Net oil revenues reached RO 5470.1m, up from the RO 4050m budgeted.

According to the CBO report, the average price of crude oil increased by 35.2 percent, from $56.67 to $76.64 per barrel in 2010. The volume of exports also rose by 10.6 percent.

Production of natural gas also played a part in the government revenue growth, rising by 7.2 percent in 2010.

As a result of these increases, Oman’s 2010 proposed deficit of RO 800m was reduced to an actual deficit of only RO 48.8m. The government was also able to increase spending in efforts to support the economy.

Real Estate and Property Job Market in the GCC is Heating Up

With government institutions developing affordable housing and working on infrastructure projects the need for property professionals is picking up in the MENA (Middle East and North Africa) region. Especially concentrated in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Qatar, the healthy economic situation and various developments are resulting in a booming real estate and property job market.

Industry experts have stated that the long-term outlook for recruitment in this industry is positive. Regime shifts around the region and increasing government surpluses in the GCC have resulted in prime conditions.

Rakia Real Estate, the government of Ras Al Khaimah investment branch, made a recent announcement that the new Al Marjan Island project will require agents for marketing and sales. Other government-related projects are also spurring the job market on.

An International Salary Survey Comparison found that wages in the Middle East region are about 30 to 40 percent above those earned in Europe and the UK. Recruitment firms state that the employment market is currently balanced. Some state that, on the whole, the job market is on the way up after many redundancies occurred in the property sector back in 2009-2010. Those who lost their positions back then have found new work as the sector improves, leaving room for those now entering the market.

According to recruiters, there is plenty of local talent across all levels in the Real Estate and Property sector. This means that the tactic of poaching staff from rival firms is being seen less, providing opportunities for job seekers in this thriving industry.

Paul Holdsworth, Staff Writer, Gulf Jobs Market News
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