ME site staff salaries soar by 15%

With project managers earning US $16,336 month, the region is attracting global professionals, says report

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By  Angela Giuffrida Published  December 9, 2006

Salaries among senior staff within the real estate development sector in the Middle East have gone up by 15% over the last year, according to figures released by property recruitment consultancy MacDonald & Company. The increase has been attributed to the unprecedented number of development projects in the region, which has led to greater demand for skilled property development staff from overseas. According to the salary guide – the first one produced by MacDonald for the Middle East – the average monthly salary for a quantity surveyor at executive level operating in the GCC now stands at US $13,613 (AED50,000), with project managers expecting to earn $16,336, architects $11,571 and commercial/contract managers $14,975. Quantity surveyors working in the sector at entry level can expect to earn an average of $6,806 a month, while project managers earn $8,168, architects take home $5,445, with commercial/contract managers earning $8,168. The figures showed that salaries for the same positions are 10% higher in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. “The main reason for the salary increase is because there is not enough local expertise, so skilled staff have to be brought in from elsewhere, mainly from Europe and Australia,” said Ben Waddilove, international consultant, MacDonald & Company. In addition to the shortage of key skills, the recent easing of restrictions on changing jobs within the UAE has increased movement among mid-level and senior professionals in the real estate sector, which has resulted in increasing pay levels, said William Buck, international director, MacDonald & Company. “The competition for talent in the development sector has also raised pay levels in overlapping industries,” he added.

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