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UAE, GCC workers may expect only 5% pay hike in 2015

DUBAI: The UAE and GCC employees can hope to have only marginal increase of an average 5 percent in their salaries this year, according to the latest Towers Watson’s salary budget planning report.

Going forward, this too is expected to dip to 4.8 per cent in 2016, marking a return to 2014 when the pay hikes were the same, Emirates 24/7 quoted the report as saying.

“Overall, the year 2015 may not see any big increments or fat bonuses and those working in the UAE may have to contend with a marginal pay hike just enough to keep up with the inflation rate in the country,” the report was quoted as saying.

Earlier predictions by other recruitment agencies put the pay hike for this year in the same band. Morgan McKinley’s 2015 UAE salary guide, predicts a 5 to 6 percent pay hike, which is lower than anticipated earlier due to falling oil prices.

A previous report by Aon Hewitt, a company into talent, retirement and health solutions shows the pay hikes in the country are going be less than the 5 percent mark, it was pointed out.

The company reportedly says employers in the UAE are predicting an average salary increase of 4.8 percent in 2015.

The Tower Watson report highlights that disposable income of employees is likely to go down in the near future and workers at all professional levels are likely to feel the increasing financial burden, the report said.

“Across the Middle East and Africa, our research reveals that salary budgets are now being set with less and less connection to the consumer price index than they might have been in the past. Pay growth is now being driven by the bigger picture; factors such as the competition for talent, growth expectations and also the shifting weight of base salary or guaranteed cash within the overall reward package against other elements such as car allowances and performance-related bonuses. In the Middle East, allowances are very prevalent and can be a substantial portion of the reward package,” Laurent Leclère, Senior Consultant and Data Services Lead for the Middle East, was quoted as saying by Emirates 24/7.

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