NRIs in Saudi Arabia over 60 years may have to return home


JEDDAH (Saudi Arabia): Indian expatriates in Saudi Arabia over 60 years of age may have to return home with the Saudi government contemplating an age bar for foreign workers in private sector companies.

If the decision is implemented, returning back home may be the only viable option for the thousands of NRIs who have settled in Saudi Arabia.

This plan comes as a part of the Saudi labour ministry’s long-term strategy, designed in 2015, to prepare Saudi youth to dominate country’s job market.

As per the strategy, the government’s objective is to create a situation where the number of expatriates is reduced to a possible minimum, and then encourage private sector companies to hire more native workers.

However, the ministry of Labour has discarded the contention that it is forcing expatriates aged above 60 to retire from private sector companies, but the fact remains that the recent changes in Saudi job market are impacting the lives of many foreigners in the country. The laws are being made harsher and stricter on all fronts.

The total workforce in the private sector in Saudi Arabia consists of approximately 90% expatriates among whom Indians constitute the largest community.

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