Jul 09 2011
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Saudi Arabia: Firms asked to rectify occupation of workers
RIYADH - The Ministry of Labor has called on all private establishments to rectify the professions of their workers over five days effective from Saturday (July 9). This will allow the government to get an idea of jobs in the sector so as to work out Saudi employment and training needs.
The ministry indicated that the establishments can amend the professions of their workers, with the exception of those jobs limited to Saudis, which include recruitment agents, receptionists, expeditors, representatives of government agencies, cashiers and civil security guards.
It stressed that the inaccuracy of the data of some establishments in the past has reduced the ministry's ability to benefit from it. This information would allow it to develop education and training programs.
It reiterated the importance of updating data and for companies to use the grace period given by the ministry before the enforcement of the Nitaqat program.
It also urged private company owners to provide information about their workers to labor ministry branches.
It stressed the importance of updating the data of their establishments to enable the ministry to classify them in the proper zone. This will also enable the ministry to correct the labor market status and work out future plans according to correct data.
Saudi Arabia introduced the ambitious Saudization program in 1994 with a mandate for private companies to recruit a fixed percentage of Saudis every year. The program has met with a lukewarm response from the private sector, ostensibly due to the shortage of a trained Saudi workforce in the labor market.
Labor Minister Adel Fakieh at an award ceremony held in Riyadh earlier this year to honor private sector companies that achieved high-levels of Saudization had hinted at introducing a carrot-and-stick approach for companies, an obvious reference to the Nitaqat program that his ministry has launched recently.
He said those companies that achieve high-level Saudization would receive incentives and full cooperation from his ministry.
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