Kuwait revamps overseas recruitment

LABOR PROTOCOLS UNBIASED, EXTEND FAIRLY TO ALL NATIONALITIES

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KUWAIT CITY, May 7: The committee overseeing labor market regulation is nearing completion of establishing protocols for recruiting foreign workers in specific technical fields demanded by the market. This initiative aims to streamline operations for business owners and private sector companies, fostering a conducive business environment to curb visa trade, reports Al-Jarida daily. According to informed sources, the committee is focusing on devising recruitment mechanisms for key professions such as medical, educational, engineering, legal, accounting, and financial roles.

These mechanisms will be applied uniformly to recruiters of all nationalities without discrimination, with implementation set to commence soon. Following approval by relevant authorities, the implementation of the labor market regulation measures is expected to commence within the next few years. The committee overseeing this regulation, comprising the Public Authority for Manpower and pertinent governmental and private entities such as the Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Higher Education, the Kuwait University, and specialized professional associations, has nearly finalized the establishment of protocols for recruiting foreign workers in essential technical fields demanded by the market.

This initiative is geared towards facilitating business operations for owners and private sector enterprises, fostering a conducive business environment, and curtailing residency trade. Similarly, the Public Authority for Manpower persists in its endeavors to regulate the labor market and refine the processes for recruiting overseas workers through a series of regulatory measures, facilitated by a civil government committee comprising a panel of experts, reports Al-Rai daily. According to reliable PAM sources the committee will have representatives from PAM and key stakeholders such as the ministries of Interior, Foreign Affairs, Higher Education, the Kuwait University, and the specialized public service associations.

The sources said during a recent meeting various proposals for recruiting workers, particularly in technical fields, were deliberated upon. The sources elaborated that the committee scrutinized the most pressing technical professions demanded by the labor market, intending to devise tailored recruitment mechanisms for each while at the same time underscoring that the proposed recruitment process would unfold gradually, with the initial phase targeting professions in medical, educational, engineering, legal, and financial domains. Efforts are underway to ascertain the labor market’s requirements through comprehensive assessments conducted by the committee, inclusive of all nationalities eligible for entry into the country.

Among the proposals is a stipulation to withhold the issuance of new work permits unless preceded by the endorsement, validation, and equivalence of academic credentials by official bodies and the Kuwaiti embassies overseas. Furthermore, the committee is mulling over the addition of accredited professional experience certificates for each profession, spanning a minimum of 3 years for select roles and up to 5 years for others. Additionally, applicants may be required to present a professional practice certificate sanctioned by relevant authorities and successfully clear a professional practice test. Recent decisions issued by PAM have regulated the process of transferring expatriate labor brought in from abroad between employers, allowing companies to recruit all anticipated workers from overseas without the need for internal transfers.

However, the daily has learned that the committee has made significant progress in this regard, with a focus on addressing the market’s demand for technical professions. Regarding the proposed mechanisms, sources indicated strict enforcement of certifying practical certificates issued by labor-exporting countries, in coordination with Kuwaiti embassies abroad. Additionally, requirements include possessing a certificate indicating years of experience specific to each profession, alongside a profession practice certificate endorsed by relevant authorities in the worker’s country. Equivalency of the certificate in higher education in Kuwait and successful completion of profession practice tests sanctioned by certain public benefit associations are also part of the criteria.

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