Expat dependents not exempt from Nitaqat

Updated 01 May 2013
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Expat dependents not exempt from Nitaqat

The Labor Ministry has denied issuing any regulation that allows the private sector to employ expatriates’ dependents. The ministry said they would not be automatically considered under the green category.
The ministry issued the statement following erroneous reports in a section of the media.
“The news report is incorrect as the ministry has not issued any such regulation,” Labor Ministry spokesman Hatab Al-Anazi said in a statement reported by the SPA yesterday.
According to media reports, the decision to allow expatriate dependents work legally was taken after discussions between the Ministry of Labor and the Ministry of Interior.
Such dependents will be covered by the Labor Ministry’s program to facilitate change of profession and sponsorship in order to rectify their status, which is scheduled to launch next week.
Recent reports that the ministry was studying the prospects of issuing wives and daughters of expatriates work permits had revived hope for a number of women workers, especially those working in private and international schools in the Kingdom.
The ministry’s denial is also feared to affect private schools especially those teaching foreign languages. A major problem faced by the private schools in the Kingdom is the shortage of teachers, especially for science, math and English.
Some experts in the field are pessimistic about the future of the private education sector including the international schools if a strict ban on expatriate dependents is implemented because of the paucity of Saudi hands in many disciplines.


Saudi heritage body applauds citizen who returned rare artifact

Ali Saad Al-Shahrani returns rare artifacts to an SCTH official in Bishah. (AN photo)
Updated 19 min 44 sec ago
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Saudi heritage body applauds citizen who returned rare artifact

  • Aman named Ali Saad Al-Shahrani handed the rare pieces over to the SCTH office in the governorate of Bishah in Asir province.
  • A spokesman of the SCTH urged others to follow the fine example of Al-Shahrani and support the National Antiquities Recovery Campaign.

RIYADH: Six rare artifacts — some dating back to pre-Islamic times — have been handed over to the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH) by a Saudi citizen.

Majed Alshadeed, SCTH spokesman, told Arab News on Sunday that a man named Ali Saad Al-Shahrani handed the rare pieces over to the SCTH office in the Governorate of Bishah in Asir region.

One of the objects is a stone piece which includes verses from the Holy Qur’an, written in the bas relief style.

He praised Al-Shahrani’s gesture of support for the National Antiquities Recovery Campaign and urged others to follow his example.

However, he added that the gesture was not uncommon as people on many occasions have returned artifacts, showing keenness in supporting the commission in preserving the beautiful heritage and the antiquities of the Kingdom. Not only citizens, but expatriates too, have returned artifacts in the past, he added.

Notably, the SCTH honored the then Portugal Ambassador Manuel Carvalho last December for returning a finely crafted Saudi artifact of the Neolithic era to the commission.

Acknowledging the great gesture, Abdul Rahman Al-Jassas, the Executive Director of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Cultural Heritage Initiative, delivered a certificate of appreciation from SCTH President Prince Sultan bin Salman to the outgoing ambassador.

Praising the move Mohammed Al-Omrah, director general, SCTH branch for Asir region, thanked the citizen for supporting the national initiative, calling for those who have artifacts to hand them in to the SCTH or its branches in the various regions and governates.

Al-Omrah added that the National Antiquities Recovery Campaign was launched by SCTH President Prince Sultan bin Salman.

The SCTH runs a campaign fostering awareness of the importance of returning heritage artifacts and has honored citizens and foreigners who have returned archaeological objects to the commission.

The SCTH held an exhibition for the recovered antiquities and holds a register of the people who give back relics and artifacts. Some of them were honored during the opening ceremony of the first Saudi Archaeology Convention in Riyadh last year.