RIYADH: Saudi Arabia will introduce new labor rules on Sunday which means employees will no longer need the consent of their former bosses to switch jobs.
It is part of a number of reforms that will remove red tape from the jobs markets and allow workers to be more mobile. It means foreign employees will no longer need their employers’ approval to join any other organization, as long as all contractual obligations are met. The exit and re-entry visa reforms will also allow expats to travel outside Saudi Arabia without their employer’s approval after submitting a request.
More than 7 million expatriate workers will benefit from the “Improving Contractual Relationship” initiative, Sattam bin Amer Al-Harbi, a senior official at the Saudi Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development, told Asharq Business.
The overall aim is to develop a more efficient workforce and reduce unnecessary labor employee-employer labor disputes.
Al-Harbi said that employees who complete their first year of work will be able to switch jobs after the expiry of their notice period.
People without contracts will be allowed to transfer directly, with the fees to be paid by the employer and not the worker.
The labor transfer process will be handled by the job mobility services platform, or the platform for labor disputes in the case of a dispute.