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Saudi Shoura members call for ban on recruiting foreign lawyers

Saudi Shoura members call for ban on recruiting foreign lawyers

Members say there are sufficient Saudis to fill roles requiring less experience

Saudi Arabia’s Shoura Council has proposed that the kingdom stop the recruitment of less experienced foreign lawyers, according to reports.

Saudi Gazette said that the recommendation wase made during a review of the Human Resources Development Fund’s fiscal report for the year.

Member Faisal Al-Fadel argued foreign lawyers with fewer than seven years of experience should not be recruited in the kingdom as there are sufficient Saudis with similar backgrounds.

He also said any foreign recruits should undergo the Saudi Bar Association’s examination process, according to the publication.

“They should go through a personal interview before they are hired as well,” Al-Fadel was quoted as saying.

“The number of Saudi lawyers is increasing and we must be able to accommodate them in the job market.”

The Saudi Bar Association previously signed a deal with the labour ministry stating it would not recruit expat lawyers with fewer than five years of experience.

A similar arrangement also came into force for foreign engineers at the start of 2018.

Read: Saudi to halt recruitment of less experienced foreign engineers from 2018

Separately, the kingdom has made a number of sectors off limits to non-Saudis including jobs in mobile phone accessories shops, gold and jewellery outlets and car rental offices.

Read: Saudi says foreign worker ban won’t apply to all car rental jobs

A similar ban for 12 retail roles, expected to come into force in September, could see tens of thousands of foreign workers lose their jobs.

Read: Saudi work ban could see tens of thousands of expats lose their jobs

These bans and increasing living costs linked to a new dependents fee, the introduction of value added tax and higher rates for fuel and electricity have resulted in an exodus of foreign staff in recent months.

Read: Saudi sees 277,000 foreign workers leave jobs in Q4

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