Gulf companies predict growth and expansion

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Nicosia, June 11 (ANI): Despite the global financial crisis, the majority of businesses in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states expect that in 2009 they will have a similar growth as in 2008.

A study by human resources consulting firm Mercer has shown that 73 per cent of companies in the GCC have set targets for higher or similar growth in 2009 compared to 2008, while 94 per cent believe it is very likely or somewhat likely that these targets will be met.

This confidence is reflected across the survey results that covered topics including business results, talent management, incentives, headcount levels, salary planning and training and development.

On companies' retention and recruitment plans, 42 per cent plan to increase their headcount in 2009. The survey also found that 60 per cent of companies plan on increasing their headcount during 2010 - some of those by up to 10 per cent.

The Mercer survey covered 67 local and multinational companies employing more than 175,000 people in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman, Kuwait, UAE and Bahrain.

One in ten of the companies surveyed felt that the crisis had given them an opportunity to attract talent from competitors when previously this had not been a viable option.

This is further evidence of the confidence felt by a number of companies and the plans some companies have already put in place to prepare for the upturn.

The overwhelming majority (81 per cent) of companies sees talent management as more important than before the global economic downturn.

The survey also found that over a third of companies, 36 per cent, plan on revising their incentive packages to align them with performance and business objectives.

A further 15 per cent say they plan to revise their over-all long-term incentive offering.

Combined, these statistics demonstrate the growing importance of retaining staff for the long-term and the commitment to the principles of longevity and sustainability. (ANI)

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