Labor pact with Sri Lanka safeguards rights of both parties, says new CG

Sri Lankan Consul General Faizer Mackeen presents his commission of appointment in Jeddah to Ambassador Muhammad Ahmad Tayeb, director general of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the western province, on Tuesday.
Updated 15 October 2016
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Labor pact with Sri Lanka safeguards rights of both parties, says new CG

RIYADH: Recruitment of labor from Sri Lanka enjoys a smooth sail following the recent agreement between the Kingdom and the island, Sri Lanka's Consul General Faizer Mackeen said in Jeddah on Thursday.
The consul general was speaking to Arab News soon after presenting his commission of appointment to Ambassador Muhammad Ahmad Tayeb, director general of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the western province, on the assumption of his duties in Jeddah.
Jamal Balkhoyoor, deputy director general and chief of protocol of the Ministry Foreign Affairs (Makkah branch), was also present at the presentation ceremony.
Speaking to Arab News, he said that the two countries have already signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the protection of domestic workers from the island nation in the Kingdom.
“It was an important agreement which protects both the employer and the employee. He also said that the agreement would pave the way for more workers coming into the Kingdom since it provides them adequate security.
The labor agreement for domestic workers recruitment was a joint effort by Riyadh and Colombo to create a unified and well-regulated system for recruitment with emphasis on monitoring the working conditions of workers. It covers 12 categories of domestic workers including housemaids, drivers, cleaners and waiters employed by individuals.
The agreement included provisions that stipulate that contracts should be in a language that is understood by the worker and that the worker must be informed of what to do and whom to turn to in case of an emergency.
The worker also must be made aware of the facilities available to him or her in the country of destination, especially when it comes to health and personal safety and the employer must agree to terminate the service contract after a maximum of two years if the employee wishes to leave his or her place of employment. In addition, the employee has the right to retain all his or her travel documents at all times.
Referring to the conversation he had with Ahmad Tayeb, he said it was a cordial discussion related to trade, tourism and migration.
“We exchanged views on the recruitment industry of Sri Lanka and tourism including tea and investment in Sri Lanka, while recalling the relationship between Saudi Arabia and Sri Lanka dating back to centuries including the signing of the agreement enhancing trade relations of both countries, which culminated in the establishment of the first embassy of Sri Lanka in Jeddah in 1981 to strengthen bilateral relations.”
The consul general said that he extended an invitation to the Saudi Foreign Ministry officials to visit Sri Lanka and stressed that Sri Lanka has become the largest tourist destination for Saudi nationals in addition to trading and manpower in the recent years.
Sri Lanka has planned to achieve a target of $ 3.5 billion as revenues from tourism and another $ 8 billion from employment industry.
Saudi Arabia is one of the largest countries providing employment opportunities to Sri Lankan migrants. Further, he said, SriLankan Airlines has established daily flights from Colombo to Jeddah except on Friday and approximately 50,000 Umrah pilgrims visit Saudi Arabia for their religious observation in addition to the limited quota allocated for Haj pilgrims.


KSA sets bar for quality of service in communications, IT sector

The quality customer service will empower users to make informed decisions before purchasing any of the providers’ services. (Reuters/File)
Updated 58 min 41 sec ago
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KSA sets bar for quality of service in communications, IT sector

  • The update includes standards and indicators that assess the quality of service and enables consumers to view comparative quality-of-service information
  • Providers not able to compete in service quality enhancement due to lack of know-how or resources will try new approaches to attract and retain clients from a marketing angle such as decreasing rates, promotions and offering new plans

RIYADH: The Communications and Information Technology Commission (CITC) has released an update to regulate the quality of services by telecommunications service providers (TSP) in the Kingdom. 

The update includes standards and indicators that assess the quality of service and enables consumers to view comparative quality-of-service information on the following services: Internet, mobile phones and landlines, while the CITC categorizes providers on the volume of complaints that subscribers bring to the commission.

The CITC shared a sample complaint report for the fourth quarter 2017 that indicates a variation in the number of complaints posted on all services. 

Two crucial businesses elements are on the line: Reputation and customers’ loyalty. The new indicator should encourage all carriers in Saudi Arabia — STC, Mobily, Zain, Go, Lebara and Virgin — to strategically build customer-centricity across the sector by creating a new unit for customer quality management and connect it to all other departments.

Telecommunication providers who intend to invest in enhancing the quality of service and problem-solving strategies will gain a broader market share than what they have today, and possibly increase their rates. 

Providers not able to compete in service quality enhancement due to lack of know-how or resources will try new approaches to attract and retain clients from a marketing angle such as decreasing rates, promotions and offering new plans.

Disseminating a comparative data of service providers highlights two new significant values in the Saudi corporate market — transparency and quality customer service. The emergence of these two values will empower users, individuals and establishments to make informed decisions before purchasing any of the providers’ services listed on the indicator. 

The new regulation aims to meet the following objectives: Develop services in telecommunication and information technology, provide consumers with a high quality of telecommunication services, and to motivate competitiveness among service providers, along with urging transparency among their registered users.

The telecommunication and information sectors play a significant role in all aspects of a country, and legislating a service quality indicator as part of the digital transformation in Saudi Arabia will create an environment that attracts new international service provider to enter the Saudi market. 

Saudi Arabia is capitalizing on information technology. Dashboards to deal with challenges and monitor businesses performance, starting with the TCC execution plan to use data by the fourth quarter of 2018, will set the bar for quality of service in the telecommunication sector and force providers to be more customer-centric.