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Crackdown on residence violators in early April
March 13, 2015, 4:24 pm

The security authorities in collaboration with the General Department for Private Security forces plan to crack down on residence law violators early April, reports a local daily. The daily said according to the security authorities 105,000 expats violate the residence law — 4.3 percent of the total population.

The security authorities have disclosed statistics show 2,460,000 people hold valid residence permits. The security authorities will target certain places which are known to shelter residence law violators.

The sources added, the violators are from various nationalities. Giving a breakdown, the authorities said the Indians come in first place with 20,000, the Bangladeshis 19,000, the Sri Lankans 14,000, Ethiopians 10,000, Filipinos 8,000, Egyptians 7,000, Syrians 6,000, Indonesians 5,000, Nepalese 4,000 and Pakistanis 3,000.

Meanwhile, Minister of Social Affairs and Labor, and the State Minister for Development and Planning Hind Al-Sabeeh has announced that, during a meeting of the board of directors of the Public Authority for Manpower a few days ago, the board has approved a suggestion to impose a financial guarantee of about KD 250 for every new work permit issued to bring laborers from outside the country, reports Al-Jaridah daily.

In a press statement Al-Sabeeh explained “The decision comes into force from April 1, 2015.” She also revealed “in principle the board has also approved to increase the transaction fees.” However, she said “the new charges differ in terms of the type of transaction.” But according to the “daily”, the new charges for work permit will be KD 20 instead of the current KD 2, whereas the charges for “transfer transactions” have been increased from KD 10 to KD 50.

“We are waiting for some additional data and information that will put the finishing touches on the new charges before the issue is referred to the Department of Fatwa and Legislation to determine if the decision runs contrary to other laws of the country, and from there, it will be referred to the Cabinet for endorsement,” Al-Sabeeh added. Al-Sabeeh also explained, “The current charges for transactions pertaining to labor are more than 30 years old and that the charges are considered very low compared to the charges imposed in other GCC countries.” She pointed out, “Kuwait is heading for major construction development projects that will need thousands of foreign workers.” With regard to the opening doors for work permits of all activities, Al-Sabeeh explained, “The issue has not yet been discussed, especially because the issue needs more deliberate studies. It is not rational to open the doors for work permits at a time when the study on population restructuring program is yet to be completed in the country.”

Meanwhile, according to sources close to the “manpower authority”, the financial guarantee imposed on every new work permit will only be implemented on work contracts signed outside Kuwait and not contracts signed locally. The sources indicated, “a sum of KD 250 will be deposited in the file of the employer and the money will be transferred to authority.” The sources pointed out the, “imposition of the financial guarantee is considered a positive step towards to fight “visa trafficking”.

It is also one of the serious procedures undertaken by the authority to curb and eradicate this phenomenon that tarnishes Kuwait’s image at world level especially the human rights organizations.” “This step will ensure that, the visa traders will think ten times before issuing a visa without having any intention to provide work for the employee — a practice that has produced a vast number of marginal workers,” the sources stated.

In case of any attempts by the employers to oblige their employees to cater for the financial guarantee imposed by the labor authorities, the employee can file a report through the ministry’s hotline or present him or herself at the manpower authority’s headquarters in Jabriya and file a labor complain in this regard.

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