Kuwait News, April 30: The Ministry of Commerce warned the domestic labor offices against manipulating the prices of recruiting domestic workers from abroad, demanding that the offices abide by the pricing set by the Ministry of Commerce for recruitment.
These sources told that any office that is detected as manipulative will be closed and its owners will be referred to the Public Prosecution, pointing to the formation of a team from the “Trade” and the Public Authority for Manpower to control the market and protect the consumer.
This comes at a time when the owners of offices for the recruitment of domestic workers confirmed their commitment to the decision of the Ministry of Commerce, which determined the value of fixed contracts for these workers from abroad at 890 dinars.
Owners of domestic labor recruitment offices told that the possible return to exporting new contracts after the blessed Eid Al-Fitr holiday will contribute to a new decline in new contracts, especially in light of the widespread demand for contracting with workers of all nationalities and types. [Read Also: Kuwaitis and Qataris still need a visa to travel to the Schengen area]
Regarding the value of the fixed contracts decided by the Ministry of Commerce at 890 dinars, they indicated that it is modest and not enough to achieve a margin for them, especially since the value of one contract from the Philippines, which is the most requested by customers, ranges between 2,400 and 3100 dollars (equivalent to 734 to 950 dinars ) without the ticket price.
The office owners attributed the change in the price of contracts to labor export agencies from the Philippines or India, where the price changes according to the nature of the experience the worker enjoys and other advantages.
They stated that setting the value of the new contracts at 1250 dinars, including travel tickets and services, would be appropriate for all offices, especially those working with Filipino labor agencies, while the previous prices could be returned to Indian or African contracts, which range between 750 and 900 dinars.
According to data from the Ministry of the Interior and the Public Authority for Manpower, of which Al-Qabas obtained a copy, the total number of new contracts for domestic workers entering the country amounted to 26,000 contracts, compared to the cancellation of approximately 4,500 residence permits annually.
The Corona pandemic had a significant impact on the domestic labor market, as the percentage of annual decreased contracts to 30% of the total new employment entering the country, especially during the past two years 2020/2021, in which 14.1 thousand workers entered, compared to 52 thousand new contracts in The years 2018/2019.
By comparing the number of domestic workers in the period before and after the pandemic, their numbers in 2019 amounted to about 731 thousand domestic workers, and gradually decreased until the end of the last year, to settle at approximately 591,000 workers, with a decrease rate of 140,000 workers.
Female employment constitutes the largest proportion of domestic labor contracts in the country, reaching 50.1% of the total employment holding residency in accordance with Article 20.
Prices based on experience
The owners of offices across Al-Qabas called on the committee concerned with setting prices for domestic labor contracts, to develop a new regulation regulating prices, based on the experiences owned by the new worker, in addition to the type of service required. They pointed out that the salaries of specialized workers rise in value in contracts, and range from 250 to 300 dinars per month, which is twice the salary that the average domestic worker receives, but is registered within the domestic labor, and bears Article 20 of the Residence Law, since he works inside homes.