KUWAIT: First Deputy Prime Minister and Interior Minister Sheikh Talal Al-Khaled Al-Sabah gave instructions to take steps that help open recruitment of expatriate workers from new countries other than those that have large communities in Kuwait. “The instructions include coordination with the foreign ministry to sign memoranda of understanding with new labor-exporting countries,” the Public Authority of Manpower said on Wednesday.

These steps are meant to help address labor shortages in certain fields, it added, noting that these measures are in line with the state’s efforts to address the demographic imbalance problem “by diversifying labor sources to meet the labor market’s needs”.

PAM will receive an official labor committee from the Philippines late May to discuss matters related to sending specialized labor to Kuwait. PAM will coordinate with concerned authorities to take the necessary procedures regarding the matter, as bringing workers from the Philippines will likely resume after the discussions. It has been reported that the Philippine delegation will request eight hours of work daily and one day of rest weekly for domestic workers, and overtime pay if work exceeds this limit.

Meanwhile, the Central Agency for Public Tenders has approved a request by the health ministry to award three tenders to provide medical support services to all governorates at a cost of KD 57.1 million. The first contract is for the provision of nurses to Hawally health zone at a value of KD 14 million. The second contract includes the Sabah health zone and the Capital and Jahra governorates at a value of KD 20.3 million. Both contracts were awarded to the lowest bidder.

The third contract includes the governorates of Farwaniya, Mubarak Al-Kabeer and Ahmadi, which was awarded to the third lowest bidder, conforming to the conditions and specifications, at a value of KD 22.8 million. “The ministry is in the process of receiving new batches of Indian, Bangladeshi and Filipino nurses to appoint them in health centers that will be opened in the new areas, as well as to fill any shortages in existing hospitals and centers,” sources revealed to Kuwait Times.