Housemaid recruitment in Saudi Arabia costliest in Gulf

Updated 13 December 2013
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Housemaid recruitment in Saudi Arabia costliest in Gulf

The domestic workers recruitment market in the Gulf, with the exception of Saudi Arabia, has witnessed a state of stability, including hiring rates, according to a study.
A random study that covered several recruitment offices in four Gulf neighboring states — the UAE, Qatar, Kuwait and Bahrain, revealed that local recruitment businesses are experiencing a kind of recession, which has resulted in price volatility, with few available options.
Recruitment offices in Bahrain, for example, provide domestic workers from five countries, namely Ethiopia, India, Indonesia, the Philippines and Sri Lanka, said Al-Qadisiyah Recruitment Office in Manama.
“The prices range from BD770 (SR7,697) to BD900 (SR8,976),” said a source in the office.
According to ESCO Recruiting Services office in Doha, most recruitment offices in the country hire domestic help from four countries: Ethiopia, Indonesia, the Philippines and Kenya. “Families interested in bringing in a maid or house-help are given detailed background of the worker before bringing him or her to the country,” the source said.
It takes 20 to 90 days to bring in domestic help.
“The salaries of maids coming from Ethiopia or Kenya are in the range of SR800, while the salaries of those coming from Indonesia are in the range of SR900.”
The study found that while the UAE recruits house-help from four countries — the Philippines, Indonesia, Kenya and Ethiopia, Kuwait had fewer options following ban on recruitment of house-help from Indonesia and Ethiopia.
A state of near-standstill prevails in recruitment offices in Saudi Arabia following the decision to stop recruitment from Ethiopia. This has led to an increase of about 300 percent in prices charged by recruitment offices in comparison to the Gulf market, which is in a state of stability.
Office owners in Riyadh say that business activity has come to a standstill with the exception of a few maid sponsorship cases.
“The cost to transfer the sponsorship of a maid ranges between SR26,000 to SR35,000, more than threefold in comparison to a couple of years ago,” said Khaled Al-Azhari, an employee at a recruitment office.
Maids in the Kingdom are predominantly Filipino and Sri Lankan, he said, adding that the trial period had been reduced from three months to just five days once the sponsorship is transferred.
The cost of recruiting maids from Sri Lanka, virtually the only option available currently in the Saudi market, ranges between SR17,000 and SR25,000, besides entailing a waiting period of four to eight months for the maid’s arrival in the Kingdom. Filipino maids cost SR1,500 to hire.
Other offices, he said, provide maids from Morocco with a timeline of four months for arrival and a cost of SR12,000 for recruitment.
Saudi Arabia is the more expensive country among the Gulf States when it comes to the recruitment of drivers. A Filipino driver comes at a cost of SR9,000, while a Sudanese or Moroccan drivers costs SR 8,000, with a 90-day waiting period for their arrival.
Recruitment of drivers is less expensive in Bahrain, followed by the UAE, Kuwait and Qatar.
According to statistics in media, two million maids work in the Gulf States, of whom 800,000 work in Saudi Arabia alone.


Saudi Arabia’s nuclear program ‘fundamental to Kingdom’s energy sector’

Updated 18 September 2018
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Saudi Arabia’s nuclear program ‘fundamental to Kingdom’s energy sector’

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia’s atomic energy program is fundamental for developing a sustainable energy sector, a senior minister told the International Atomic Energy Agency on Monday.
The Kingdom plans to start building its first two nuclear power reactors this year and as many as 16 over the next 25 years at a cost of more than $80 billion. The plan is to provide 15 percent of Saudi Arabia’s power from nuclear by 2032.
Speaking at the IAEA’s annual conference in Vienna, Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih said the atomic reactor projects were were part of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 to diversify its energy sources to nuclear and renewables.
The program “abides by all international treaties and conventions and best practices, adhering to the highest standards of safety, security and transparency,” Al Falih said.
The minister said Saudi Arabia was committed to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, which calls for nuclear disarmament and stresses the commitment of nuclear power states to share their peaceful technologies with abiding member states.
He also said the Kingdom had called for cooperation with the international community to make the Middle East a nuclear weapons free area.
The US has started to reintroduce heavy sanctions against Iran over its nuclear program, after Donald Trump pulled out of a deal with the country earlier this year to curb its atomic ambitions.
Al-Falih called on the international community to take a more stringent stance against all threats to regional and international security, particularly Iran, given its “alarming efforts to build its nuclear capabilities, in tandem with its increasing acts of sabotage and aggression against other states in the region.”