Govt plans minimum wage for Saudi workers


A ministry spokesman said a plan was in the works to set minimum salary targets for Saudis such as teachers or store cashiers as a part of a program to create more jobs for citizens.

Labor Minister Ghazi Al-Gosaibi said wages for Saudis in the private sector were shamefully low. “The minister’s statement doesn’t mean that we will force companies to accept pre-determined salaries,” ministry spokesman Hattab Al-Enezy told AFP.

“But we will create guidelines for salaries suitable for the field of work.”
Gosaibi said many businesses were not following closely the Saudization program, which requires companies to reserve a number of jobs for citizens, and criticised the wages offered to Saudis.

“I feel ashamed that there are 270,000 unemployed Saudi young men and a similar number of unemployed Saudi young women in a country that employs more than seven million foreigners,” Gosaibi said, according to media reports.

“The level of wages for Saudis in the private sector is a shame,” he said.
The seven million foreign workers in Saudi Arabia constitute more than a quarter of the country’s total population of 26 million.

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