While the number of expatriate workers continues to surge in the GCC states, their contribution to the economic progress and development in these countries is both acknowledged and recognized. Addressing a conference of the International Labor Organization in Geneva on Wednesday, Deputy Labor Minister Mufrej bin Saad Al-Haqabani said: “The number of expatriate workers in the Kingdom has reached more than 10 million including three million dependents, while annual foreign remittances of expats have climbed to SR148 billion ($39 billion).”
However, he also highlighted the expats’ contribution to the Kingdom’s remarkable progress. “They have been participating in developmental, construction, service and productive projects. They also contribute to the economic growth of their countries through remittances,” he explained.
Speaking on induction of the national Saudi workforce in the labor market, he emphasized the government’s success in employing more citizens in the private sector. “The participation of the national cadre in the sector rose from 10 to 15 percent following the introduction of the Nitaqat system in 2011.”
He said about 750,000 Saudis including 400,000 women had been given jobs in the private sector by April 2014.
Speaking with Arab News, Ibrahim Badawood, managing director of ALJ Community Initiatives, said the remarkable increase in the number of expats clearly shows that the Nitaqat (Saudization) campaign was not aimed at reducing the number of foreigners in the country… see more