Almost half of all companies in Saudi Arabia are failing to comply with rules on employment of citizens, a source at the kingdom’s Ministry of Labour was quoted as saying.
Speaking to English language Arab News, the source said 48 percent of 248,828 firms based in the Gulf Arab state are currently classified in the ‘Red’ zone, or in violation of, Saudi Arabia’s Nitaqat system.
Nitiqat, introduced in 2011, is part of the kingdom’s ‘Saudization’ drive and places employers into four different brackets depending on how many Saudi citizens are on their payroll, and how much they are earning.
Companies ranked as ‘Premium’ or ‘Green’ are in compliance with Nitiqat rules, whereas firms rated as ‘Yellow’ or ‘Red’ are deemed to be breaking the rules, and face financial penalties and limits on applying for and renewing visas for foreign workers.
Chosen excerpts by Job Market Monitor