Telecom workers must be Saudi by September
The Ministry of Labour intends to boost local employment by banning foreign workers
Last month Saudi Arabia's Minister of Labour, Moufarrej bin Saad Hagbani, banned foreign workers from selling mobile phones and accessories, he has now confirmed that all telecom workers must be Saudi citizens by 3 September.
Furthermore, the Ministry of Labour also intends to nationalise the telecom industry in the long run, which will not be limited to mobile phone sales, maintenance or accessories, which will guarantee that no telecom job is held by an expatriate worker.
The decision came into effect on 10 March, giving employees and expatriate workers three months to ensure 50% of its workforce were of Saudi citizens, and a further three months to increase it to 100% by September.
A spokesman said that all parties involved have agreed on 100% nationalisation of the telecom industry, and that stores with multiple departments are required to have a separate section for mobile phone sales, maintenance and accessories where Saudi workers are exclusively allowed to work.
To add, inspection rounds, partnered with other law enforcement agencies, will be conducted to ensure that all establishments abide by the new ruling.
The pressure comes as the Kingdom's economy is beginning to slow down due to suffering oil prices, which is having a negative impact on employment. With the majority of retail and service sector jobs held by Southeast Asian and Indian workers, this move aims to boost Saudi national employment.