One of the biggest challenges before the luxury retail industry in the Arabian Gulf is the strong presence of
an expat workforce. According to Alpen Capital, more than 70 percent of the people employed in the GCC retail
sector are foreign workers. Training and managing of talent, work and residence permits for foreign workers are among the major problems for brands and retailers. Also, each GCC country is unique in this matter. Saudi Arabia and Oman are pushing to employ more nationals in the private sector, Kuwait looks to rotate foreign workforce in terms of nationalities to achieve a representation balance, while the UAE has the most liberal processes to recruit
foreign workers. What can brands and retailers do to effectively manage their workforce? Should brands look for long term investment in workers in the region?