Nitaqat concession for Burmese

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Updated 06 March 2013

Nitaqat concession for Burmese

The Labor Ministry yesterday announced concessions for the Burmese community living in the Kingdom, saying four Burmese workers would be considered one expat under the Nitaqat system.
The ministry is also considering a new law that would enforce compulsory retirement of foreigners who have crossed 60. However, exemptions would be made in certain categories to make use of their expertise.
The ministry’s decision on employment of Burmese workers comes in line with the government’s move to rectify the situation of the community estimated at more than 350,000. However, it pointed out such workers should not exceed 50 percent of the total work force in a firm.
“If the number exceeds the limit, then every Burmese in excess of 50 percent would be considered one foreign worker,” said Hattab Al-Anazi, spokesman of the ministry.
“We have taken this decision to encourage the private sector to employ these workers who are available in the Kingdom, instead of recruiting workers from foreign countries,” Al-Anazi said. The Saudi government has decided not to deport Burmese people considering their special situation.
“This is a great decision,” said Mohammed Rauf Rafi, secretary-general of European Rohingya Council in the Kingdom, and thanked the Saudi government for the noble gesture. He estimated the community’s population at more than 350,000, citing latest census figures.
Rafi disclosed the government’s plan to issue special iqamas to the Burmese within a month. “The government has also promised to give us higher education, training and health facilities,” he told Arab News. Burmese people, who ran away from oppression back home, have been living in the Kingdom for the last 60 years.
Samir Hussien, head of the Human Resources Committee at Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, urged authorities to pass a legislation terminating employment of expatriates over 60 in order to create more jobs for Saudis.
According to estimates, about half a million of the total eight million foreign workers are above 60, said Amal Asaad Sherah, vice president of the committee. “A package of decisions must be made soon to ban recruitment of any foreign worker aged more than 55,” she added. However, she pointed out that experienced expats needed to train Saudis.

Green light for crown prince-led Saudi privatization program

Updated 25 April 2018

Green light for crown prince-led Saudi privatization program

  • The Privatization Program is one of 12 key elements of the Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030
  • The program is aimed at increasing job opportunities for Saudi nationals

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Council of Economic and Development Affairs on Tuesday approved the Privatization Program that is one of 12 key elements of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030. 

The program is aimed at increasing job opportunities for Saudi nationals, attracting the latest technologies and innovations, and supporting economic development.

It encourages both local and foreign investment in order to enhance the role of the private sector, with government entities adopting a regulatory and supervisory role. The aim is to increase the private sector’s contribution to GDP from 40 percent to 65 percent by 2030. 

The program will aim to reach its objectives through encouraging the private sector to invest in establishing new schools, universities and health centers, while the government pursues its organizational and supervisory role in health and education.

The privatization program aims to benefit from previous success stories, with the private sector’s collaboration in the development of infrastructure, and its involvement on a large scale in sectors such as energy, water, transport, telecommunications, petrochemicals and finance.

The program sets out a series of objectives in three areas: Developing a general legal framework for policies related to privatization; establishing organizational foundations and dedicated institutions to execute the policies; and setting a timescale for their delivery. 

The Council of Economic and Development Affairs is headed by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.