Sri Lanka to cut recruiting charges for housemaids

Updated 27 May 2015
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Sri Lanka to cut recruiting charges for housemaids

RIYADH: Sri Lanka’s job agents have agreed to reduce the recruiting charges of housemaids from SR15000 to SR11,000 to sustain the Saudi market.
Speaking to Arab News during his visit to the capital, Faizer Mackeen, president of Association of Licensed Foreign Agencies (ALFEA), said that the members of the association have reached a consensus on decreasing the charges.
Mackeen said that there are more than 1,000 recruiting agents in Sri Lanka and only one fifth of them are authorized to send manpower to the Kingdom.
He said that the reduction in charges will be conveyed by the Sri Lankan government to its Saudi side when the Kingdom’s labor team visits the island before or after the month of Ramadan.
An average of 6,000 Lankan maids are arriving in the Kingdom every month and the reduction in the charges would help increase their number, he said. “All Saudi-bound domestic workers to the Kingdom are given three weeks of training, followed by an orientation program. We are pretty sure that these trained maids will fit into Saudi homes effectively.”
Teams from the Kingdom and Sri Lanka are expected to review the implementation of the labor agreement signed between the two countries in Riyadh early this year, Mackeen said.
“It is a comprehensive accord which protects both the employer and the employees,” he said, adding that under the new agreement, the original passports of domestic workers will be in their possession and their salaries will be remitted to their designated banks.


Putin welcomes Saudi delegation at St. Petersburg cultural forum

Updated 18 November 2018
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Putin welcomes Saudi delegation at St. Petersburg cultural forum

JEDDAH: Russian President Vladimir Putin warmly welcomed Saudi Arabia’s delegation to the 7th St. Petersburg International Cultural Forum as one of the main guest countries attending the annual event.
The delegation was headed by Saudi Minister of Culture, Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Farhan, who posted a selfie with Putin on his Twitter account.
“We responded to the invitation from our friends in Russia to participate in the St. Petersburg cultural forum, and it was an opportunity to meet with officials to promote cultural cooperation,” the post said.


The forum, which ran from Nov. 15-17, was held under the theme “Culture as a Strategic Potential of the Country,” was attended by visitors from 101 countries.
Opening the forum, the Russian president expressed hope that the event would develop fruitful dialogue between society and the state.
Putin said the forum gives others a chance to get to know Russia more closely, stressed that “what distinguishes his country is the diversity of languages and traditions.”
During the visit the Saudi minister held talks with the Russian president on the sidelines of the event.
He also met his Italian counterpart, Alberto Bonisoli, on the sidelines of the forum to discuss areas of joint cooperation between the two countries and means of enhancing Saudi-Italian cultural relations.
“I was delighted to meet with the Italian Minister of Culture and we have many opportunities for a future of strong cooperation between the two countries,” Prince Badr tweeted.

Bonisoli said that culture is “a means of communication” for politics, even when serious international crises occur.
“If there are problems between two or more countries, according to their positions, culture is still a way to convey the messages of partnerships, communities, politicians, and sometimes to promote fundamental values,” he added.
The St. Petersburg International Cultural Forum annually attracts thousands of experts in the field of culture from all over the world.
Stars of theater, opera and ballet, renowned directors and musicians, public figures, representatives of and academic communities, all attend the event.
The year’s program includes 14 pavilions, including museums, circuses, theaters, cinema, literature, tourism, folklore and popular culture.