Kuwait keen on solving labor-related problems


Speaking on the sidelines of the 26th GCC labor ministers’ meeting, which began earlier in the day, Minister Al-Afasi said that Kuwait has spared no effort in finding solutions to labor-related problems. One example of this, he said, was the state’s intervention to help laid-off Kuwaitis previously employed in private sector firms.

The government swiftly issued a decision to handle the issue of the laid-off, the minister noted. The meeting is promoting localization in both government and private sectors in all GCC member states, in order to benefit Gulf citizens, the minister explained. Al-Afasi and his accompanying delegation arrived here last night to participate in the meeting.

The summit began with a speech by Omani Minister of Manpower Sheikh Abdullah Bin Nasser Al-Bakri, in which he said that the meetings have "undoubtedly" contributed to deep-rooted coordination among member states at all levels, especially in terms of labor issues.

Yesterday’s meeting saw many significant labor-related issues being addressed, including reports on the council’s previous resolutions and recommendations, examination of the unified vocational safety charter and discussion of the creation of job opportunities for GCC nationals among others.

During the opening session, GCC Secretary General Abdulrahman Al-Attiya said that the localization of jobs and facilitating the transition of workers within the Gulf region were among the main issues of concern to Gulf leaders, which require exerting the greatest efforts in order to attain these objectives.

Providing job opportunities has become more of a social cause, requiring all the concerned official bodies in the GCC to work together on the issue, with the aim of establishing inclusive national plans to address the matter, Al-Attiya pointed out.

The summit’s agenda also involves a range of other issues, chiefly the introduction of immigrant labor entry regulations and the revision of labor legislation and bylaws amid existing changes.

A preparatory meeting of GCC labor undersecretaries was held on Saturday evening, focusing on personnel training, rehabilitation, national labor employment, market regulation and the recruitment of immigrant workers.

Meanwhile, at a celebration held on the sidelines of the event, a number of private Kuwaiti firms were honored at the eighth gala for private sector companies involved in the recruitment of nationals.

The celebration saw Kuwait’s Gulf Bank and the Kuwait Finance House, along with the Al-Mansour educational institute, being honored for their attempts to ensure that the majority of their workforce is from the national population.

These awards will encourage Kuwaiti firms to employ nationals, with the ‘Kuwaitization’ process in Kuwait now reaching 60 percent, which is seen as an ‘achievement,’" said Mohammad Al-Kandari, an Undersecretary with Kuwait’s Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor.

Both the Gulf Bank’s and KFH’s workforces are now 60 percent-plus Kuwaiti in composition, which is another asset for the Kuwaiti banking sector, Al-Kandari said.

Surour Al-Samaeree, the director of Gulf Bank’s Human Resources Department, said that the bank has adopted the ‘Kuwaitization’ policy, not only for university graduate-level staff but also for employees with college and high school diplomas. The bank also provides training courses for students aspiring to work in the banking sector, with the aim of preparing them for private sector employment, he revealed.

Abdulaziz Al-Jaber, the Deputy Director General of KFH, said that, as well as its workforce being principally Kuwaiti, the finance house also employs staff from Oman, Saudi Arabia, Yemen and Bahrain. He explained that ‘Kuwaitization’ has become a core concern for KFH since it is an international institution, with branches in Turkey, Malaysia and Bahrain, and is soon to open new outlets in Germany and Saudi Arabia.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *