Saudi to ban foreign workers from grocery shop jobs

The Ministry of Labour expects the change to create thousands of jobs for Saudis



Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Labour and Social Development is reportedly moving ahead with plans to ban foreign workers from jobs in grocery and confectionary shops.

Arab newspaper Al-Madina cited informed sources as saying a draft decision was being prepared to 100 per cent Saudise jobs for all shops selling consumers goods.

The plans are expected to create 20,000 job opportunities for Saudis during the first year of the restrictions.

In addition, the ministry is considering measures to limit roles in food and drink mobile vans to just Saudis, creating a potential 6,000 further jobs.

The kingdom’s Shoura Council recently requested the closure of smaller stores and the restriction of retail licences to larger premises able to employ more Saudi men and women.

Similar Saudisation plans in the mobile shop sector last year are said to have created 8,000 jobs for Saudis but have also led to disruption.

Thousands of mobile shops closed in the build-up to and after a 100 per cent Saudisation deadline for the sector passed in September after either being found in violation of the rules or shut by their owners due to profitability concerns.

Read: Another 1,000 Saudi mobile shops shut from Sept-Nov

The ministry is also pressing ahead with Saudisation plans in other sectors including car rentals, healthcare and shopping malls.

Read: Only Saudi citizens to be employed at kingdom’s shopping malls

The limiting of jobs to Saudi citizens in the car rental sector is expected to create 5,000 jobs for citizens.

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