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Wednesday , April 21 2021

Business owners in Kuwait question the decision to ban 60+ year old employees

KUWAIT CITY, Nov 24: With the start of the countdown to the implementation of the decision to ban work permit issuance and renewal for those who have reached the age of 60 years and above and for those holding a high school diploma or below and its equivalent certificates, many questions have been raised about the negative consequences of this decision on some economic activities, especially in the field of craftsmanship, which would be severely affected as it will lack experiences that have contributed and still contribute to the development of its work and the transfer of its accumulated knowledge and experience to successive generations, reports Al-Qabas daily.

Many business owners believe that the decision will be an injustice to the experienced craftsmen who have been trained inside and outside Kuwait and refined their skills until they became experts, due to which it is unfair to get rid of them in this way.

They stressed the importance of employees remaining free to be chosen by the employers, as the latter would be most familiar with their practical needs.

President of the Kuwait Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) Muhammad Jassim Al-Saqr said KCCI is preparing an integrated professional technical study regarding its point of view in solving the demographic problem that the country suffers from in line with the public interest and that of the economy.

He said the study is expected to be completed soon and will be presented to the relevant government agencies, as well as to the public for discussion.

Commenting on the “ban on 60 year old employees” decision, Al-Saqr revealed that several meetings were held with the State Minister for Economic Affairs, and the Minister of Social Affairs and Labor Mariam Al-Aqeel, as well as the Director General of the Public Authority for Manpower Ahmad Al-Mousa.

He said, “We have witnessed a great understanding and cooperation from them, and they have assured to reach final solutions regarding the work ban file for those who have reached 60 years of age and over and for those holding a high school certificate or below and the equivalent certificates. All parties will soon be satisfied”.

Al-Saqr indicated that the authority’s decision, even if it was misdirected, has negative repercussions on the economic activities of a literal nature, stressing that the height of human contribution is between the ages of 60 and 70 years.

He added, “There are many professions that do not need a university degree, such as craft professions. Those who practice them refine their experiences with them and their skills build up as they age such that they keep pace with the developments in their fields and become experts in them. It often becomes difficult to replace them with another person on the pretext that he has a higher degree”.

University degree holders excluded from the decision

The decision of PAM is to prohibit the issuance of work permits for those who have reached the age of 60 years by the end of the current year 2020, except for holders of university degrees.

However, economic circles say this exception does not protect the business sectors from the potential negative consequences, as many local factories and craft professions are run by 60-year-old expatriates who do not hold certificates. Their expertise is more important than certificates, and they are used for training and equipping workers.

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