Saudi housemaid recruitment fees to drop by a fifth

Sourcing deals with African countries are expected to lead to a slide in recruitment prices



Saudis can expect the cost of recruiting a housemaid to drop by a fifth this year, according to reports.

Daily newspaper Al-Madina cited recruitment offices as saying prices could drop by about 20 per cent due to new agreements the Ministry of Labour and Social Development will sign with African countries in the first quarter of 2017.

Deals with Somalia, Ethiopia and Chad are expected to be signed in the coming months.

Yahya Al-Maqbool, chairman of the recruitment committee at the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said offices had recently discussed with the ministry how to streamline the recruitment of foreign workers.

Saudis in the low and medium income groups have been affected by rising costs for recruiting housemaids, recruitment office owner Mohammed Al-Sulami and Adel Al-Jaber was quoted as saying.

In October a group of Saudi women called for cuts to domestic worker wages.

Read: Saudi women call for cut to domestic worker wages

The group was said to be asking Saudi families to pay their maids no more than SAR1,000 in light of tougher economic conditions in the kingdom.

At certain times of year housemaid recruitment fees rise, with the buildup to Ramadan in particular known for price increases.

Read: Saudi housemaid fees reach $13,300 in the buildup to Ramadan