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The New Arab

Kuwait looks to ban expats from public sector jobs

Under new plans, only expats with specialised skills can land public sector roles [AFP]

Date of publication: 31 October, 2016

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The tiny emirate is considering the measure in a bid to rebalance its population, of which almost two thirds are foreign workers.

Kuwait could be banning expats from public sector jobs.

A report on adjusting the state's demographic has recommended only allowing foreign workers in specialised jobs that cannot be filled by nationals.

Sources at the Supreme Planning Council's secretariat general told al-Rai newspaper Kuwait's government has been given a dozen recommendations, including building "labour cities" where expats coming in and out of Kuwait can be better monitored.

It suggested six locations for the cities, of which two had already been built, al-Rai reported.

The Kuwaiti government has been seeking to rebalance the state's demographic, where expats make up an estimated 70 percent of the tiny emirate's 4.3 million population.

In 2013, it introduced a law to cut the country's foreign workforce by half by 2020 and therefore reduce its reliance on foreign workers. Kuwaitis also fear the country's culture is being lost to foreign influences.

Last year it banned expats over the age of 50 from finding employment there.

In December 2014, a bill was passed that would prevent some expats from bringing their families to the country.

Among the latest recommendations, Kuwait could deport expats that lose their job and recruit only skilled and experienced expats who could benefit Kuwait.

Expatriate forum InterNations named Kuwait as the worst country in the world for expatriates after poll was conducted with 14,000 foreign workers across the world.

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