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Tuesday , October 19 2021

350,000 expats with valid residence stranded abroad

Various sectors face shortage of labor

KUWAIT CITY, Apr 25: The business sectors in Kuwait have been severely affected due to decisions implemented to take health precautions in the country which has prevented expats entering Kuwait hence leading to shortage of workers.
The business owners have repeatedly requested the government agencies to allow entry of workers of companies who have valid residence permits in the country while taking necessary health measures. 350,000 workers have valid residence permits and 150,000 have left Kuwait permanently. Hence it has become necessary to take measures and allow stranded expats gradually.

A human resource official in a logistic service company stated that the shortage of labor has doubled and many companies are suffering from a shortage of drivers for heavy and public vehicles. Also there has been an acute shortage of specialized technicians in the field of mechanics, maintenance, cleaning, construction sector etc.

Yousef Al-Shammari, who owns a group of agricultural and contracting services stated that the shortage in the agriculture field has been tremendous. Before he used to pay 120 KD for a worker now due to shortage of workers he has to pay KD 350 per worker. He further stated due to the opening of window to transfer residence from the agricultural sector to other sectors this has added to scarcity of workers, reports Al Qabas Demand for labor in the farming and fishing sector has become high.

The officials at the Ministry of Health stated that to allow stranded workers back to Kuwait is subject to further studies where they follow on day to day developments related to coronavirus pandemic. The corona curve depends from one country to another hence it becomes difficult to generalize to recommend all countries expats to return back to Kuwait.

The sectors which are facing shortage of workers are mainly in Fishing, Restaurants, Farms, Specialized Technicians, Contracting . Currently 1586,494 expatriate workers are in Kuwait.  151,990 workers permanently left Kuwait in 2020,  350,000 workers are stuck abroad with valid residency. Kuwait is facing 31% of labor shortage.

The epidemiology situation differs between countries hence those who have been vaccinated with certain doses may not guarantee the entry of those workers into the country, given the registration of new mutation and strains in some countries such as India, which recorded 349691 cases yesterday with 2767 deaths confirms the seriousness of the conditions in some countries where workers are stranded outside Kuwait.  The Ministry of Health recommends to avoid traveling during the current period unless it is absolutely necessary. The decisions taken to suspend or prevent entry of expats coming from specific countries aim is to prevent infiltration of a new strain of virus which rapidly spreads increasing casualties and death rates.

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