Positive expectations in MENA for 2013
Results of Bayt.com’s Consumer Confidence Index Survey for November 2012 suggest that despite the fact that economic conditions for residents in the MENA region only slightly improved this year compared to last year, respondents are still optimistic for the year to come. In fact, respondents in the MENA region expressed positive expectations for better economic, business and employment prospects in 2013.
Respondents reached consensus when it came to attitudes and perceptions toward prospective economic conditions, personal financial and job situation, likelihood to purchase and invest, and expectations toward the job market and employment.
2013 will be a better year all round
Our survey shows that most of respondents expect their financial situation and general business conditions to improve in 2013, with more jobs available as a result. In fact, almost half of respondents believe that their country’s economy will improve.
In the UAE for example, many are looking forward to a more positive year. Half believe that their personal financial situation will improve, and 47% have similar hopes for the country’s economy. The majority also believe that business conditions will follow suit, while 37% are optimistic for the availability of jobs.
In Saudi Arabia, people are also looking forward to a more positive year. Five out of ten believe that their personal financial situation will improve, and 46% believe Saudi Arabia’s economy will also improve. The majority of respondents in Saudi Arabia believe that both business and employment conditions will get better in 2013.
In Qatar, sentiments are similar to those felt elsewhere in the Gulf region, with 66% of respondents saying that Qatar’s economy has either remained the same, or improved.
Egypt respondents, on the other hand, believe that the cost of living will increase in the coming 12 months and that the cost of real estate will also go up.
In Jordan, and despite a positive outlook for the year to come, 56% of respondents still said that Jordan’s economy has declined, while 77% claimed that their salary did not keep pace with the cost of living in Jordan during 2012.
From the above, it is evident that events taking place in some of the MENA countries during 2012 clearly had a repercussion on the region as a whole. The good news is that people in the MENA expect things to stabilize and even get better in the coming year.