Stay of expats in yellow-zone companies to be reduced

Stay of expats in yellow-zone companies to be reduced
Updated 21 August 2014

Stay of expats in yellow-zone companies to be reduced

Stay of expats in yellow-zone companies to be reduced

The Labor Ministry has decided to impose new restrictions on yellow-zone firms under the Nitaqat nationalization scheme that will reduce the stay of expat workers in such firms from six to four years from Oct. 25.
The stay will be reduced further to two years from the seventh lunar month of 1436H.
Taiseer Al-Mufrej, director of the information center, said the new measure, which will be applied at beginning of the new lunar year, 1436H, aims to encourage private firms to employ more Saudis to improve their Saudi-to-expat ratio.
He said that the labor permits of expatriates working in yellow-zone firms would not be renewed after four years of stay in the Kingdom.
“The duration of their stay will be calculated from the issuance of their first work permit,” he said.
The ministry has stopped a number of services and facilities for companies in red and yellow zones.
Yellow-zone firms have been denied new recruitment visas, sponsorship transfer, change of profession for its workers and work permits for its new workers.
Al-Mufrej, however, pointed out that yellow-zone firms could change their status by employing more Saudis with the support of the Human Resource Development Fund (HRDF).
“The HRDF will assist them in hiring qualified Saudis,” he said, adding that the fund would also support them in paying Saudi wages.
According to a recent report issued by the ministry, 36,951 companies remain in the red and yellow categories, employing more than 500,000 expats.
Saudi nationals, by contrast, account for only eight percent of their workforce.
Among the 17,313 companies classified in the red category, 16,498 are small-sized, 786 medium-sized and 29 are large-sized companies. Of the 19,637 yellow-zone firms, 16,654 are small-sized enterprises, 2,833 medium-sized, 146 big firms and four are gigantic companies, the report said.
For more information about its services, the HRDF can be reached on 920000713.