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Saudi ministry suspends firm for mass sacking of citizens

Saudi ministry suspends firm for mass sacking of citizens

The labour ministry said it is investigating the incident

Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Labour and Social Development has suspended a customer services firm working in the telecoms sector for the mass firing of Saudi staff.

The dismissals led to uproar on social media where the hashtag #فصل_جماعي_لموظفي_مراكز_الاتصال highlighting the dismissals was widely circulated.

Ministry spokesperson Khalid Abalkhail confirmed the halting of services at the facility on Twitter and said the ministry was investigating.

The news comes amid renewed scrutiny of Article 77 in the country’s labour law, which allows workers on unlimited contracts to be dismissed without reason if the company pays 15 days of wages for each year of employment.

Those on a fixed contract are owed wages for the remaining period of the contract, with fixed and unlimited contract dues capped at two months of annual pay.

Earlier this week, Saudi Arabia’s Shoura Council said it was studying amendments to the labour law with the ministry, with Article 77 highlighted as one potential area for change.

This followed complaints from citizens, who said they had been dismissed from their jobs arbitrarily.

Read: Saudi authorities study changes to worker dismissal law

The Institute of International Finance said in a recent forecast that the Saudi economy would shrink 0.4 per cent this year following an increase in the Saudi unemployment rate to 12.3 per cent.

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