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Population imbalance tied to large number of expat workers – ‘Measures prepared’

KUWAIT CITY, Jan 22: Secretariat General of Higher Council for Planning and Development has attributed part of the population imbalance problem to the arrival of a large number of expatriate workers for execution of mega developmental projects in the country.

It stressed that the reform process should focus on bringing to Kuwait only those who can add value to the country.

Statistics of the Secretariat General for Planning affirms that the policy for population structure which it has put in place aims at reducing the rate of increase in number of expatriates from 3.5 percent, which is the annual average rate between the years 2010 and 2014, to about 2.4 percent during the development plan period until it reaches 2.2 percent by 2020.

This means the growth rate will be reduced by half. Based on the needs of the second development plan, the estimated increase of labor force will be about 68,317 individuals per year until 2020.

The secretariat said the reason behind the increase in the number of expatriates compared to citizens during the years between 2010 and 2014 is the increase in dependence of labor market especially the private sector on expatriate workers.

The secretariat has prepared specifi c measures to restore the population balance in favor of national labor force such as allotting maximum period of residence for expatriate workers and increasing the period of residence based on educational qualifi cations.

The measures also include reducing the number of marginal and unskilled workers and placing restrictions on bringing domestic workers. There will be also restrictions on monitoring and evaluating workers necessarily required by companies and projects.

Those implicated in visa trading will be punished. In the same context, Secretary General of Higher Council for Planning and Development Dr Khaled Mahdi affi rmed that the population structure has a strategic priority as it contributes to the economic model that Kuwait has adopted

By Hiba Al-Taweel Al-Seyassah Staff

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