KUWAIT: A recent decision to increase the fees collected for some labor-related transactions created a great deal of dissatisfaction among employers, though the decision is still yet to be put in effect until the beginning of June. Minister of Social Affairs and Labor Hind Al-Subaih recently announced increasing the work permit’s issuance fee from KD 2 to KD 50, transfer fee from KD 10 to KD 50 and work permit’s renewal fee from two dinars to KD 10. Many employers described the decision as ‘unstudied’ and hasty. They called for reconsidering it and warned of the negative impact on both workers and employers.
Chairman of Kuwait Trade Union Federation (KTUF) Salem Al-Shebeeb said that the decision should have been studied and reviewed before being passing. “Taking into consideration that labor cost has gone up, employers will surely take advantage of laborers who will be the prime victims of such a decision.” he underlined.
Meranwhile employer Ahmed Al-Saleh said that along with his colleagues, they would now think over and over before considering recruiting laborers. He added that laborers might not be directly affected by the increase, but expatriate labor’s salaries in the private sector would surely be affected.
Employer Khalifa Al-Azmi said meanwhile that the new fees would overburden some employers in terms of cost and spending, especially those who have so many projects and wish to recruit laborers from outside of Kuwait.
Employer, Ahmed Al-Thafeeri said in the meantime that he agrees to the increase, but remarked that it should not be imposed so suddenly. He added that most employers are likely to renew their workers’ residency visas earlier before the new prices take effect to avoid paying the new fees. “Labor departments will be very crowded over the next two months,” he predicted.
On the other hand, employer Mohammed Al-Faisal expressed optimism about developing the services provided by the social affai9rs ministry, especially doing online transactions that made it so easy for employers and spared so many company representatives the need to go to labor departments. “The increase is inevitable in view of the increasing prices of everything,” he said. “So, those increases are reasonable.” – Al-Jarida