Saudi to compare expat remittances to earnings

The new mechanism could potentially impact millions of expats who live and work in the kingdom



Authorities in Saudi Arabia are reportedly considering plans to introduce a new mechanism that will compare remittances to a sender’s income.

The new mechanism could potentially impact millions of expats who live and work in the kingdom.

Arab News reports that the project is the brainchild of the country’s Finance Ministry, the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency and other bodies.

It aims to take better control of remittances in the country, after authorities detected that thousands of foreign workers transfer amounts that exceed their income.

Sources told the publication that this could be a sign of concealed or criminal actions.

The new legislation is expected to be launched soon and is designed to limit labour market irregularities and violations that increase the incomes of expatriates.

Any income obtained by foreign workers will be linked with banks through a unified network.

Saudi Arabia’s Department of Statistics estimated that the country’s population totaled 31.52 million in 2015, of which around 10.4 million were expats.

In recent years several Gulf countries have considered a tax on remittances to boost public coffers.

Read: UAE rules out income tax, mulls taxing remittances