During the fourth quarter of 2009, employment of expatriates increased significantly in Saudi Arabia and Qatar, a report on Gulf job market covering expatriate employment in each country said.

Outward remittances from Saudi Arabia increased by 12% in 2009 relative to the previous year, while remittances from the UAE fell by 15% over the same period.The finding is based on official data and analyst estimates of trends in money transfers by expatriates.

Of expatriates who lost their jobs, over 50% found new employment within the region, while 30% returned to their home countries.

Kuwait, UAE and Bahrain saw a net fall in the number of expat employees.

Oman had a marginal rise in employment.
Among job categories, Sales jobs had the fastest growth, and among sectors, Logistics followed by Retail and Consumer Goods, had the biggest increase in jobs.

Engineering jobs faced a net reduction of 2.6% as new project starts did not fully absorb all the engineers being released from recently completed projects.

The real estate and oil & gas were the fastest shrinking sectors, the findings show.

The results are based on actual staff increases and decreases reported by 11,000 managers across the region, who participated in a survey by GulfTalent.com.

Massive spending by the Saudi government on infrastructure projects has helped maintain economic activity during the global economic downturn, while growth in Qatar has been fueled by the country’s continued exploitation of its huge gas reserves, the third largest in the world.