Engineering Industry Update Q3, 2014

Engineering Industry Update Q3, 2014

Engineers are the foundation of many of the innovations in our modern world, and the Middle East has long been a popular destination for engineers. Oil rich states such as the UAE have built modern cities from the desert-up using funds gained from the exploitation of the vast fossil fuel resources under their very feet.

This is why the requirement for foreign oil and gas engineers continues today, either through an international company or with one of the Gulf states’ own national oil companies. However, with the end in sight for its finite oil and gas reserves, countries like the UAE are now attempting to diversify their industrial base.

Other forms of clean energy, such as solar energy, are being heavily backed and the government is also encouraging and supporting other sectors, such as the automotive sector; Jaguar Land Rover is at the early stages of building a factory in the country.

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A Petroleum Engineer earns over $100,000 on average and graduates can command salaries of $80,000 or more.

Powered by significant investments in power projects and infrastructure development, the engineering sector has witnessed tremendous growth in the Middle East in recent years. Technical and management staff often tops the polls of the most highly paid workers in Abu Dhabi. Much of the engineering work is in the Industrial City of Abu Dhabi HCSEZ, which welcomes foreign investment and business. The city also hosts the government backed Masdar Institute, which has an emphasis on the engineering and science R&D.

Hot Trends in Engineering Recruitment

With increased constructions happening in the UAE, demand for Engineers has rapidly increased. The sector is seeing a growth in job demands. At least 7,137 new jobs have been filled in the market, and as per the Bayt.com figures, the average salary for engineers in the country is Dh.13,277 ($3,615).

The demand for those in IT and technology is also increasing. The tech-based roles have witnessed growth in the UAE with Bayt figures showing that 4,627 new professionals were added last month. The average salary in this sector is AED 248,869 ($67,754.49).  Also, while average salaries for Civil and Mechanical engineers are around AED 116000, the average yearly income of a Project engineer is around AED 139,207.

Arecent survey reveals that jobseekers are likely to reap benefits of a growing job market in the UAE this year. This will be largely due to existing vacancies, and due to scores of jobs that are being created right now.

More than half of the participating recruiters in the survey said that fresh jobs are likely to be on the horizon and more than 64% of recruiters confirmed the creation of new jobs.

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Around 70% of recruiters in the Oil & Gas sectors are expecting the creation of new jobs, whilst 58% of recruiters in the Construction and Engineering sectors are expecting the creation of new jobs in 2014.

Middle East economies, predominantly the GCC, grew at an average 4% in 2013. The worldwide turn around in the last quarter of 2014 shows signs of revival, with rising industrial outputs, a record number of jobs created in the United States, cooled down Eurozone crisis, averted Syrian conflict, peace talks with Iran, Dubai winning the Expo2020 and a more stable oil price forecast are all signaling better than expected economic growth in the Middle East region. All these factors have boosted investor confidence all around the world and the Middle East would witness a much larger portion of Foreign Investments.

As per the revised economic outlook report from IMF, the Middle East would grow at a rate of 5.5% – 6% in 2014. This means a higher number of jobs would be created. Arab World Careers predicts that the Engineering, Construction, Oil & Energy, Tourism and Aviation sectors would drive growth in the GCC markets. 2014 would continue to see nationalisation efforts by these economies. We suspect Kuwait to implement a similar law in 2014 as Saudi Arabia’s Nitaqat Law. The number of new jobs created in the GCC economies would be between 470,000 – 500,000 and the number of positions to be filled would be upwards 4,000,000.


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