Kuwait public sector begins reducing number of foreign workers

Filipinos who availed general amnesty granted by the Kuwaiti government are seen here gathering at the Kuwait International Airport Terminal 4, on April 3, 2020 on their home to Manila amid the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic crisis. (AFP)
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Updated 05 August 2020

Kuwait public sector begins reducing number of foreign workers

  • The move is part of the nation’s move toward Kuwaitization

RIYADH: Several Kuwaiti government ministries have started to lay off expatriate workers, according to a report on Tuesday by Al-Rai newspaper.

It said the ministries will dismiss 50 percent of foreign employees, in particular those who work in non-technical fields and for subcontractors.

“The process of terminating expats working in the governmental agencies will happen gradually and we will be notifying them to ensure that the work is not affected,” a source told Al-Rai.

The dismissal process is expected to take three months but it is understood that employees who were hired directly by the ministries have already been redeployed to companies that provide subcontracted services.

Arab Times reported that expatriates who work in specialist fields requiring certain levels of expertise will be laid off gradually to avoid disrupting workflow.

The move is part of the nation’s move toward Kuwaitization. The policy was introduced in 2018 in an attempt to reduce the number of foreign workers in the public sector, and provide a more balanced workforce that offers more job opportunities for citizens.

“The committee has taken concrete steps to address the issue in the demographic imbalance,” said MP Khalil Al-Saleh, head of the parliamentary Human Resources Development Committee. “We will be holding a meeting next week to prepare a report, with data and statistics, that we will present to the National Assembly.

“We have achieved what we agreed upon to solve the problem, especially since there are expats that are working in non-technical jobs in the governmental sector.”

According to data published in December 2019, about 120,000 of the 3 million expatriates in Kuwait work in the public sector.


Dawn of a new leader, Kuwait’s new emir sworn in and pledges to do his ‘utmost best’

Updated 19 min 23 sec ago

Dawn of a new leader, Kuwait’s new emir sworn in and pledges to do his ‘utmost best’

  • The new Emir said the country’s constitution ensured a “smooth transition” of leadership
  • He succeeds his brother Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah who ruled Kuwait since 2006

DUBAI: Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabeh has been sworn in as the new Kuwait Emir on Wednesday, vowing to carry out his responsibilities to his utmost best, state news agency KUNA has reported.
Al-Sabah said the country’s constitution ensured a “smooth transition” of leadership, as the country mourned the death of his brother Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah who ruled Kuwait since 2006.
“The trust bestowed upon me by the Kuwaiti people is a trust I bear in my neck,” the new Emir said.

(AFP)

“Kuwait has been subjected, throughout its long history, to serious and harsh challenges that we managed to overcome through cooperation,” he added.

Al-Sabah paid tribute to the previous leadership and said “Sheikh Sabah’s policy will remain a highlight for us.”
The Speaker of the Kuwaiti National Assembly Marzouq Al-Ghanim also spoke at the ceremony.
“We are confident that Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah will lead Kuwait to prosperity,” he said.

His appointment was immediately welcomed by Saudi Arabia’s King Salman, who said that his country and Kuwait have always had strong bonds throughout the years.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi and Iraq’s Bahram Salih also congratulated the Sheikh Nawaf on his new role.