KUWAIT: The ministerial health and social affairs committee said increasing fees for various services, such as health services for expats and the fuel price increase and others, were only up to the government to decide and that no other party has the right to discuss or call for cancelling them. Sources within the committee stressed that suing the government to cancel the fees is everybody’s right and that the judiciary had already issued a verdict about the fuel price increase and that the same is expected concerning the health fees. “The government has thoroughly studied these health fee increases and came up with the decision to increase them with some exceptions,” the sources stressed, noting that the Ministry of Health is authorized to cancel such exemptions or exceptions in the future, except for bedoons, domestic helpers and Kuwaitis’ spouses and children.
Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) educational sectors are currently going through a number of structural reforms to meet changing market demands. Speaking at the Gulf International Schools Forum in Dubai, PricewaterhouseCoopers’ education manager Roland Hancock stressed regional educational sectors have to undergo five main changes, emphasizing the links between major ministries seeking the provision of interconnected services and focusing on early education. Hancock also said that GCC states depend on increasing private sector contributions, including public-private-partnership education projects.
Head of Middle East and India Research at ISC Research Nalini Cook said the UAE was ranked first amongst regional countries in terms of the number of international schools, followed by Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Turkey and Kuwait. Cook also said that UAE came first in the total number of students registered in English-speaking schools, with around half a million students. She added that regional international school fees were around $8,000, with an average of $7,747 in the UAE, $6,325 in Saudi Arabia, $8,069 in Kuwait and $9,235 in Qatar.
Manpower and Government Restructuring Program’s (MGRP) Secretary General Fawzi Al-Majdali met a delegation from the Kuwait Pharmacists Society for the second time in three weeks to discuss a number of topics related to Kuwaiti pharmacists’ demands and rights in the private sector. The society’s secretary general Ali Hadi said the meeting focused on discussing co-ops’ condition to only hire male pharmacists to work in pharmacies located in various co-ops, in an attempt to cancel it to achieve gender equality, especially since females make up two-thirds of newly-graduated pharmacists. Hadi said the meeting also discussed job opportunities for Kuwaitis in various pharmacies and setting a minimum salary for Kuwaiti pharmacists in the private sector in order to encourage more of them to move from the public to the private sector.