Gulf executives 'undaunted by ME turmoil'
Dubai, May 29, 2011
The recent unrest in the Middle East region has not shaken the confidence of C-suite executives in Gulf states mainly Saudi Arabia, the UAE or Qatar, said a survey conducted by Oliver Wyman, a leading management consulting firm.
The 4th Oliver Wyman / IBOPE Zogby International survey found that the business confidence levels, which had improved steadily since 2009, continued to rise, especially in the UAE. The new survey covered a total of 160 top executives in the Gulf region.
The top issues for the GCC C-suite were finding ways to educate and create jobs for the large number of young people entering the workforce and the continued threat of outside macro-economic shocks.
When asked directly about the impact of the 'Arab Spring' on economic development in their countries, executives were almost equally divided in their responses.
According to the survey, majority of the executives said government efforts to create jobs for young nationals were more effective than those undertaken by the private sector.
When asked about 'their greatest challenge”, a majority of the executives said creating jobs for young nationals was their biggest challenge than fostering greater political participation.
On the other findings, Oliver Wyman said when it came to hiring, the choices varied by nationality.
Local respondents prefered to employ a young national with skills, while expats in the UAE, Saudi and Qatar said they would hire an expat with similar skills at a lower salary.
Commenting on the results, John Turner, who leads Oliver Wyman’s public sector consulting practice in the region, said, 'C-suite executives are definitely aware of the turmoil elsewhere, but are focused on tackling the big issues at home.'
'The data like ours will help inform business-government discussions on what to do next,' he added-TradeArabia News Service