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Banks pay 824.6 million dinars in salaries, bonuses in 2023

The banking sector saw a notable surge in employee salary expenditures last year, marking a 16.3% increase to 115.7 million dinars.

Kuwait Finance House leads the banking sector in employee expenses, accounting for 34.7% of the total spent by banks, with a value of 286.7 million dinars

• Banks boost employee spending to enhance human resources and increase national labor.

• By the end of last September, local banks employed 11,164 national workers out of about 15,000.

According to a statistic published by Al-Rai newspaper, the banking sector increased its spending on employee salaries by 16.3% last year, amounting to 115.7 million dinars. This brought the total expenditure from 708.9 million in 2022 to 824.6 million dinars. It’s worth noting that this figure excludes Al-Ahly United’s expenses.

The total includes expenses for employees of nine banks, covering salaries, incentives, periodic bonuses, and end-of-service benefits, whether at banks in Kuwait or their affiliates abroad.

By the end of last September, the number of national laborers in the local banking sector reached 11,164 employees, out of approximately 15,000.

The profits of the banks grew by about 30.4% during 2023, rising to 1.535 billion, up from 1.177 billion in 2022.

The increase in banks spending on their employees comes in light of their continuous endeavor to enhance their investments in human resources, developing their workforce, and increasing their national labor ratio. This has become a strategic target for most banks.

The statistics showed that Kuwait Finance House (KFH) leads the banking sector in employee expenses, accounting for 34.7% of the total spent by banks, with a value of 286.7 million dinars. It is followed by the National Bank of Kuwait, accounting for 28.3% and a value of 233.1 million.

Next is Boubyan Bank, accounting for 7.7% with a value of 63.6 million, followed by Burgan Bank at 7.2% and a value of 59.58 million. Gulf Bank follows at 6.7% with a value of 53.87 million, then the National Bank at 5.8% and a value of 48.4 million.

The Commercial Bank accounts for 3.5% with a value of 28.8 million, Warba Bank at 3.2% and a value of 26.44 million, and Kuwait International Bank at 2.94% with a value of 23.9 million.

In terms of the highest growth in employee expenses during 2023 compared to 2022, Al-Tajari led the rest of the banks with an increase of 61.5 percent, followed by KFH with 37.1 percent, Burgan with 12 percent, then Warba with 17.1 percent, Al-Watani with 5.9 percent, Boubyan with 5.65 percent, and Al-Ahli with 5.64 percent. Meanwhile, Gulf Bank reduced its employee expenses by three percent, and International also decreased by two percent.

Bankers believe that the growth in expenses and employee costs, along with increased remuneration for board members, stems from natural salary increases granted annually by banks to their employees.

This is coupled with the efforts of banks to increase the proportion of national labor, replacing foreign labor. Banks have also intensified their reliance on online electronic services and ATMs, resulting in a reduction in foreign labor.

The statistics revealed that one of the reasons for the increase in banks’ expenses on their employees is the growth in spending on training programs for new employees from citizens. This is done to enhance their efficiency and fill the gap left by foreign labor. Additionally, banks are committed to training their employees on electronic services and modern technology methods as part of their plans to improve customer service.

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