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KUWAIT CITY, Nov 17: The Minister of Commerce and Industry, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Public Authority for Manpower (PAM), Dr. Abdullah Al-Salman, has addressed the Council of Ministers in anticipation of an opinion from the Fatwa and Legislation Department whether the board of directors has the right to impose a fee of 500 dinars on nongraduate expatriates who are 60 years and above – the issue that has been moving in a vicious circle for about 15 months with no solution in sight, reports Al- Rai daily
The daily quoting sources say imposing any fee by the state should be implemented by a law through legislation and not a decision. However, it seems Al- Salman’s question in this regard is not all he is looking (for a legal answer), as he is seeking answer to another question, whether the PAM board of directors has the right to exclude certain category of residents from paying fees for renewing work permits such as in the case of Palestinians, children of Kuwaiti women and those born in Kuwait or does this procedure also require a law, or at least a decision by the Council of Ministers?
The sources pointed out Al- Salman wanted to be satisfied with the opinion of the “Fatwa and Legislation” in order to avoid this decision being labeled ‘invalid’, especially since the “Fatwa and Legislation” department had said the decision issued by the ‘suspended’ Director General of the authority not to renew work permits of the above mentioned category of expatriates was null and void. The sources revealed that if the “Fatwa and Legislation” finds that the decision to impose the 500 dinars fee is incorrect, the PAM Chairman of the Board of Director will issue a decision to renew work permits for these expatriates according to the old fee, and without referring to the Board of Directors. Sources explained that this fatwa does not mean the abolition of the requirement of universal private health insurance, given that this is a regulatory measure and not a fee.