KUWAIT: It seems the issue of residents aged 60 and above without a university degree is back on the table, as the KD 2,000 fee proposed earlier to renew their work permits will probably be reviewed. Al-Rai Arabic daily reported yesterday that Minister of Commerce and Industry Abdullah Al-Salman has asked the Public Authority for Manpower's board to reconsider the KD 2,000 fee.

Informed sources said Salman sent the request with his earlier recommendation for the renewal fee to be KD 500 along with medical insurance from a private insurance company. It is expected PAM's board will meet next week to discuss Salman's request.

Sources said the minister's request is warranted for several reasons, including that the largest group included in this decision cannot afford the KD 2,000 fee. Moreover, health insurance in the private sector guarantees the strength and cohesiveness of the health system by reducing the pressures this group is subjected to.

Although Salman's proposal was only supported by the commerce and interior ministry undersecretaries and rejected by the majority of the board, sources said reopening of discussions in this regard have positive expectations for obtaining more support for the minister's proposal to reduce the fee.