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PAM deducts salaries of SMEs owners with expired licenses

‘Almost 3,000 affected by decision’

KUWAIT CITY, Dec 20: The salaries of Kuwaiti small enterprise owners, registered under Chapter 5, have evaporated because of the lack of coordination between the Public Authority for Manpower (PAM) and the Ministry of Commerce and Industry as well as the fear of PAM about prior monitoring by the State Audit Bureau, reports Al-Qabas daily.

The estimated number of citizens affected by the deduction process has reached 3,000. They are registered under Chapter 5, and constitute 20 percent of the total license holders. The deduction amounts range between KD 15 million and KD 18 million, given that the discount period ranges between three and six months for citizens’ dues for labor support, the average of which is estimated at KD 1,000.

According to informed sources, the discount period for those registered under Chapter 5 and include monthly labor support salaries, exceeded six months. The enterprise owners were surprised by the decision to stop the financial support upon renewing their licenses. This is due to a gap recorded on them from March to December, or for a period of three months, depending on the date of the license expiry.

Accordingly, the amounts were deducted or indebted to them retroactively. The sources said they were surprised by the implementation of the discount on “chapter 5” and retroactively, given the expiry of the commercial license, despite the issuance of the Ministerial Decree No. 107/2020 on the extension of commercial licenses for companies and individual institutions, is on January 1, 2020, provided the extension is until December 23, in line with the health measures calling for reduction in the number of visits to government departments.

They said, “Some of the business owners registered with PAM, reaching about 15,000 citizens in number whose project licenses expired in March or April, which is the period of government closure due to the COVID-19 crisis.

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