No change in dependent fee structure in Saudi Arabia

The fees should be paid in advance and on a yearly basis along with the issuing or renewal of the worker’s residency permit, when issuing exit-re-entry visa or even final exit visas. (SPA)
Updated 02 January 2018

No change in dependent fee structure in Saudi Arabia

JEDDAH: The General Directorate of Passports (GDP) has announced that foreign workers in the private sector will have to pay fees for every dependent or companion.
The directorate, known as Jawazat among expats, has posted a tweet on its official Twitter account stating that it was implementing a decision previously issued by the Council of Ministers.
It added that the fees for every dependent or companion must be paid through the SADAD payment system, which was established by the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) as the national electronic payment service in Saudi Arabia.
In a clarification note received by Arab News via the directorate’s Lt. Col. Talal Al-Shalhoub, the Jawazat said the targeted dependents include the first wife, male children under 18, and all female children. It also clarified that the term “companions” entails the second wife, the third and the fourth, in addition to parents, relatives-in-law, domestic laborers and every expat sponsored by the worker.
As for the fees every expat worker has to pay, the directorate said these are applicable for every dependent and companion of all officially permitted workers in the private sector. “The fees should be paid in advance and on a yearly basis along with the issuing or renewal of the worker’s residency permit, when issuing exit-re-entry visa or even final exit visas.”
The authority made it clear that the worker should pay SR100 ($26.7) for every dependent or companion starting from July 1, 2017. It also gave notice that the fees would be doubled from July 1, 2018, and would reach SR300 by July 1, 2019. According to the same announcement, a single dependent’s or companion’s fees will hit SR400 in 2020.
The announcement also stated that no nationality would be excluded from the decision, and the fees are not refundable. It concluded that a worker could check the validity of his/her passport through the Interior Ministry’s “Absher” online services.

Riyadh governor opens high-profile Saudi economic forum

Updated 57 min 42 sec ago

Riyadh governor opens high-profile Saudi economic forum

RIYADH: A high-profile conference to tackle some of the main challenges facing the Saudi economy was on Tuesday opened by Riyadh Gov. Prince Faisal bin Bandar.

Speaking at the opening session of the influential three-day Riyadh Economic Forum (REF), the prince praised the Saudi business community for its cooperation with the government in helping to strengthen the country’s economic fortunes.

The ninth edition of the forum, being held under the title “Human-Centered Economy,” will discuss some of the key future economic issues confronting the Kingdom.

Thanking King Salman for his patronage of the event, vice chairman of Riyadh Chamber and chairman of the forum’s board of trustees, Hamad Al-Shuwaier, said important recommendations linked to the Vision 2030 plan would be announced during the gathering.

These would be related to the areas of public finance reform, the nonprofit sector, future jobs, the environment, and reverse migration.

“What distinguishes the forum, which serves as a research center for national issues, is its focus on the principle of dialogue and participation between all concerned, specialized and responsible parties within the economic and social community, by intensifying meetings and promoting participation in all study discussions, with the aim of touching barriers in a close and intensive manner.

“Accurately diagnosing the facts gives accurate results when identifying solutions,” he added.

Special sessions of the forum will aim to generate practical suggestions and solutions to help with economic decision-making and to establish the principle of dialogue and participation among sectors of the business community.

In July 2019, the REF held a panel discussion at the chamber’s Riyadh headquarters on a study detailing the role of balanced economic development in reverse migration and sustainable and comprehensive development in the Kingdom.

Its focus was to identify the obstacles preventing the movement of young workers between towns and big cities, as well as highlighting ways to improve the quality of life in small urban centers through an analytical survey of industrial and service resources in different regions.

Al-Shuwaier noted that the forum was special in bringing together a broad range of intellectual and practical minds from government and private sector organizations covering many fields.

He added that the chamber was working on the final touches to transforming the forum into an independent economic think tank that served national economic issues.

Ajlan Al-Ajlan, chairman of the Riyadh Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI), which organized the event, said the forum’s main objectives included using scientific studies and methodology to identify issues affecting the national economy, analyzing constraints on economic growth and working to combat them by learning from the experiences of other countries.

He pointed out that the forum coincided with the Kingdom’s presidency of the 2020 G20 summit of global leaders, being held in Riyadh in November, and that the eyes of the world would be on Saudi Arabia.

The forum is one of the participants in T20, an official G20 engagement group, with four topics related to important sectors discussed by the group.

The opening ceremony of the REF was followed by a session on future jobs, administered by Education Minister Hamad bin Mohammed Al-Asheikh. Delegates discussed employment requirements linked to the fourth industrial revolution and how to tackle the prospect of 40 percent of jobs becoming obsolete due to mechanization in the farming and industrial sectors.

The session highlighted that education should go hand in hand to prepare students for the jobs of the future.

Forum data showed its previous eight sessions attracted 33,938 attendees, an average of 4,243 participants per session.