According to the decision signed recently by the Minister of Works, Minister of Electricity, Water and Renewable Energy, Eng. Ali Al-Mousa private companies which sign contracts with the ministry must hire a minimum of 25 percent Kuwaitis according to the terms and conditions of the contract signed with the Ministry of Works and its affiliates, which are in the pre-tender stage.
The minister explained the decision stipulates Kuwaitization as an integral part of the contractual documents of the Ministry of Works projects (owned by the as the state contractor). He added a team will be formed to supervise the implementation of the Kuwaitization program by each party, in a manner that does not violate the laws and regulations. He went on to say, the decision aims to provide new job opportunities for Kuwaiti youth, and reduce the burden on the Civil Service Commission due to the increasing number of job seekers, according to a local Arabic daily.
He pointed out that it also aims to achieve the state’s vision of increasing the rate of national workforce in the private sector, and replace expatriates with national labor in government contracts and projects owned by the ministries.
He pointed out that the Public Works authority has made great efforts with the concerned authorities to implement this policy in its projects and achieve the desired goals, noting that the regulations governing the decision include controls regulating the advertising and recruitment process on contracts, agreements and projects concluded by the entities subject to it and the benefits granted to national workers in terms of vacations, health insurance and bonuses, as well as arranging the training process for these workers to develop their capabilities and develop them functionally, to ensure a better future for newly graduated youth and to provide them with the skills and experiences needed by the labor market.
The executive regulations of the decision, a copy of which was obtained by Al-Qabas, includes more than 50 articles, arranging the mechanism for obligating contractors, consultants and implementing agencies to implement the decision, provided that the Kuwaitization team is competent to decide on jobs that cannot be quantified, given the nature of that job.
The regulation obliges the entity, before direct contracting or tenders and practices, to notify the Public Authority for Manpower of the numbers of workers required and the conditions to be met, so that the authority has its views on the conditions and determines the number of national workers on the contract and follows up on their employment.
According to the regulation, the priority in the appointment will be for the workers who have worked on the same contracts before their expiry, bearing in mind that the salary of the appointed person shall not be less than the last salary he was receiving on the previous contract, with a daily fine imposed on the contractor for each unemployed worker, in addition to 30% of the value of that fine from the date specified in the contract.
In July 2020, the Ministry had formed a team to study Kuwaitization in contracts, headed by the Undersecretary of the Sanitary Engineering Sector, Eng. Walid Al-Ghanim and members from the Public Authority for Manpower and the Kuwait University.
The Director of the Planning Department in the Ministry, Eng Eman Al-Omar, said that recruitment procedures for newly graduated and experienced workers will be carried out in coordination with PAM to nominate whomever it deems appropriate from among those registered with it, and that the Kuwaitization unit will be responsible for the recruitment procedures, the mechanism of job announcements and to conduct the tests.
Sources added that the regulation requires the contractor not to terminate the service of the Kuwaiti worker or transfer him to another contract except after a written approval from the ministry, provided that the contractor is obligated to appoint a Kuwaiti replacement with the possibility of re-appointing those whose services were terminated or who had resigned earlier, in accordance with the procedures issued by the Kuwaitization team.
The new Kuwaitization regulation in the Ministry of Works provides for the disbursement of social allowances and children’s allowances to Kuwaitis, in accordance with the rules and regulations through the Public Authority for Manpower, provided that working hours are according to what is specified in the Labor Law in the private sector, with a maximum of 48 hours per week, and what exceeds it is considered overtime hours. The rules also say it is permissible for women to work between ten in the evening and seven in the morning.
A Kuwaiti worker is granted an annual leave of 40 days, after 6 months of continuous work, and he may be granted leave to accompany a sick person for a period not exceeding 90 days without pay.
Applicants are required to obtain mandatory training, and during training they will be paid a monthly stipend of 200 dinars during the duration of the training period.