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Kuwait eyes expat cut to 1 million by 2022
January 18, 2015, 8:46 am

Minister of Social Affairs and Labor and State Minister for Planning and Development Affairs Hind Al- Sabeeh says the ministry has started applying the plan allotted for modifying the population structure of the country, based on a study conducted in this regard in collaboration with the concerned authorities.

Meanwhile, sources affirmed that the minister held intense discussions and meetings with the concerned authorities to prepare a draft law on the population structure, explaining that the draft law necessitates implementing a quota system based on nationality of the expatriates.

They said the delay in finalizing this draft law is due to some international conventions that Kuwait has signed with other countries. Indicating that there are about 3 million expatriates in the country, the sources revealed that the highest number of expatriate personnel in the country is from India, followed by Egypt and then Bangladesh, Philippines, Syria and Pakistan.

They also revealed about a plan to reduce the number of expatriates to 1 million by year 2022. They stressed the need to handle the imbalance in the population structure especially since some information suggests that expatriates of some nationalities dominate certain professions, insisting on the necessity to end such monopoly of jobs and provide opportunities to national personnel to replace them.

They said the proposed quota system will organize the entry of expatriate workers in the country while the government will work on a way to benefit from the qualified and experienced expatriate personnel to manage the shortages in the positions occupied by Kuwaiti personnel.

The sources affirmed that the government will prioritize the interests of the country while at the same time it will consider the humanitarian situations of the expatriate personnel.

Furthermore, they disclosed that the government is not keen about implementing the proposal to allot a limit to expatriates’ residence in the country by five or ten years as it will serve the visa traders whom the government is trying to control, adding that Gulf Cooperation Council discarded this idea years ago as it is difficult to identify the residency of expatriates.

In addition, the sources revealed that the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor is concerned about the increasing number of bachelors in the country as well as the presence of a large number of expatriate personnel in the country, more than what is required by companies and institutions of the private sector

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