Asians Paid 33% Less Than Westerners

Have you ever wondered how much money you make as an expat, especially as compared to other nationalities? Of course you have. Meghna Pant, features editor of Gulf Business, tells you exactly how your salary stacks up against other expats in the GCC.

The Gulf Business Salary Survey 2012 reveals – much to no one’s surprise – that expats in Saudi Arabia take home the largest pay packet, and that Western expats make more money than Arab or Asian expats in each and every country in the GCC, while Asian expats make the least.

In Bahrain, for instance, a Western expat makes 7.5 per cent more than an Arab expat and 29.8 per cent more than an Asian expat, while an Arab expat gets paid 20.8 per cent more than an Asian expat.

In Saudi Arabia, a Western expat makes 6 per cent more than an Arab expat and 36.2 per cent more than an Asian expat, while an Arab expat gets paid 28.4 per cent more than an Asian expat.

In Kuwait, a Western expat makes 9.1 per cent more than an Arab expat and 33.2 per cent more than an Asian expat, while an Arab expat gets paid 22 per cent more than an Asian expat.

In the UAE, a Western expat makes 12.6 per cent more than an Arab expat and 40.5 per cent more than an Asian expat, while an Arab expat gets paid 24.7 per cent more than an Asian expat.

In Qatar, a Western expat makes 2.8 per cent more than an Arab expat and 32.5 per cent more than an Asian expat, while an Arab expat would get paid 28.8 per cent more than an Asian expat.

In Oman, a Western expat makes 7.5 per cent more than an Arab expat and 26 per cent more than an Asian expat, while an Arab expat gets paid 17.2 per cent more than an Asian expat.

The starkest salary differential between an Asian and Western expat (which translates into the highest to lowest range) is in the UAE (40.5 per cent) and then Saudi Arabia (36.2 per cent), though an Asian expat in the UAE takes home around $10,302 per month and  $11,516 in Saudi Arabia. Again, the Western and Arab expat salary differential is the highest in the UAE, where an Arab expat takes home 12.6 per cent less than a Western expat.

The widest range between an Asian and Arab expat is in Qatar (28.8 per cent). Qatar is also the country where a Western and Arab expat have similar take-home salaries.

On average, across all job functions and titles from CEO to PA in the GCC, an Asian expat makes $10,316 per month, an Arab expat $12,788 and a Western expat $13,748. This means that if you’re an Asian expat you’ll make 24 per cent less than an Arab expat and 33 per cent less than a Western expat, and if you’re an Arab expat you’ll make 7.5 per cent less than a Western expat.

Also read: The GCC’s highest salaries by nationality

Asian Expatriate Salaries in the GCC 

Arab Expatriate Salaries in the GCC

Western Expatriate Salaries in the GCC