Expats face GOSI cuts if they stay abroad for over one month

Expats face GOSI cuts if they stay abroad for over one month
Updated 22 March 2016

Expats face GOSI cuts if they stay abroad for over one month

Expats face GOSI cuts if they stay abroad for over one month

JEDDAH: The General Organization for Social Insurance (GOSI) has revealed that it plans to suspend all services to expatriates if they are abroad for over a month, with reinstatement occurring only once they return.
The organization had not yet worked out the manner in which this would occur, but talks were taking place with the Ministry of Interior, said Abdul Aziz Al-Habdan, GOSI’s deputy governor, during a briefing at the Eastern Province Chamber of Commerce and Industry recently.
Al-Habdan was quoted as saying by a local publication that because of the large number of foreign workers in the country, the organization was working to introduce electronic services for companies and their employees. Currently 50 percent of subscribers conduct their transactions in person, he said.
On the wage protection issue, Al-Habdan said that there were some employers registering workers earning less than they do in reality, in an attempt to pay less to the fund. This also affects eventual payouts to workers, he said.
He dismissed reports that children of Saudi women married to foreigners do not benefit from the social insurance system, in reference to the decision taken by the government recently to include them as beneficiaries.
Al-Habdan said that people taking early retirement was having a negative financial impact on GOSI. However, changes were in the pipeline to change this situation, he said.
In response to the organization not disclosing and publishing its financial results, he said: “The rights of subscribers are guaranteed and maintained by the state. Our policy is heading toward further clarification and disclosure.”
He said GOSI now covers 400,000 companies compared to 25,000 over 12 years ago, with 8.5 million workers, compared to 2 million going back over the same period.
According to the GOSI website, the scheme covers workers in the private sector and a group of workers in public sector.
It provides contributors and their families “with a decent life after leaving work due to retirement, disability or death; medical care for contributors afflicted with work injuries or occupational diseases; and compensation in the event of occupational disability or death.”