Saudi Arabia – The Country With The GCCs Highest Earning Employees

Saudi Arabia – The Country With The GCCs Highest Earning Employees

Out of all of the GCC nations this year, Saudi Arabia remains the highest paying out of all of them, beating rising countries such as Qatar and expat strongholds, Qatar, Kuwait and Oman.

According to the Gulf Business Salary Survey 2015, salaries rose 7% year-on-year, with the trend matching the confidence shown in the market since the economic downturn.

Average salaries rose from $12,126 to $12,978 per month, with those numbers buoyed – unsurprisingly – by the higher paid westerners that are currently working in the country.

A contentious issue in Saudi Arabia since its nationalisation policy had been introduced, it goes to show the demand for expat workers remain, particularly at the top level of many companies.

It does remain one of the most difficult countries to obtain a working permit and visa in as well, which is why western expats pay packet remains significantly higher than their Arab and Asian expat counterparts.

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“Saudi Arabia and Qatar, can have greater ‘barriers to entry’ linked to cultural components and immigration policy,” said Gareth Clayton, senior director at Charterhouse Middle East.

“Thus, to cater for the increased demand, packages need to reflect the available and applicable pool of candidates accessible for these markets. For the right profile of candidate, these two markets in particular, present both exciting and financially rewarding opportunities.”

Overall, all three demographics saw increases in their salaries with the average Asian expat salary rising 8.3% reaching $11,066 compared to $10,214 according to reports from last year.

Arab expats saw their pay increase 4% rising to $13,567 on average per month.

Reports indicate that King Salman is keen to increase the salary of many Saudi Nationals and put less emphasis on expat salaries in a move that parallels the countries efforts to retain the countries top talent and increase employment among its youth.

Saudi is the highest paying country for western CEO’s and MDs of multinationals, with the average salary being around $46,960 per month, up nearly 5% from last year. 

For a more detailed look at the top paying jobs in Saudi Arabia please refer to the table below.


All the amounts are monthly averages taken from Asian, Western and Arab expat salaries.

Position      Monthly Salary
CEO/MD, multinational $43,508
CEO/MD, local company $25,075
Banking, treasury manager $15,065
Construction, project manager $13,289
Information Technology, manager $12,824
Real Estate, manager $12,111
Healthcare, manager $12,054
Banking, branch manager $11,869
Human Resources, manager $11,530
Media, advertising creative manager $11,420

If you would like to seek employment in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, talk to one of our senior client relationship managers to find out the best way to secure employment in KSA.

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About the author

Michael O'Keeffe

A graduate from Fairfield University in New Media with a particular focus on Television, Michael has worked in social media since graduation. His expertise will offer a variety insights into how you can penetrate into the saturated executive job market.

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