ME women 'earn less than male counterparts'
Manama, June 8, 2010
Forty per cent of women in the Middle East feel they receive less pay than their male counterparts and have a slimmer chance of promotion, according to a new poll by leading Middle East employment website Bayt.com.
The Women in the Middle East Workplace survey, which was undertaken in conjunction with research specialists YouGovSiraj, was compiled to measure women's perceptions, attitudes, experiences and satisfaction with various elements of their role in the workplace, particularly their treatment relative to their male counterparts.
Ninety per cent of women claimed to work equal or longer hours compared with their male colleagues, but 42 per cent felt they received less pay.
Meanwhile, 43 per cent felt they had less chance of promotion and a further 20 per cent felt they were not able to progress beyond a certain level in their organisations.
'Women make up a large proportion of the region's workforce and are fundamental players in helping build and shape the region's economies,' said Bayt.com chief executive officer Rabea Ataya.
'However, these poll results show that women throughout the region are still subject to a certain degree of discrimination in the workplace, particularly when it comes to compensation and opportunities for promotion.
'Maternity leave is one notable area of discontent for women in the region.'
However, while over half of women, 58 per cent, feel employers should provide them with special benefits, only 22 per cent have asked their companies for flexible timings or to work from home. Of those, 39 per cent received a negative response.
Data for the Women in the Middle East Workplace poll was collected online between the period of April 26 and May 23 with a total of 2,086 respondents, including Arabs, Western expats and Asian expats living in the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, Egypt, Algeria and Tunisia.-TradeArabia News Service