New Body in Saudi Labor Ministry Created to Fight Rising Unemployment in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia’s cabinet announced the creation of a new body within the labor ministry to combat an increase in joblessness in Saudi Arabia and a seeming reluctance by Saudis to take available jobs, according to a report.

Unemployment in Saudi Arabia has risen slightly since the announcement of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 and National Transformation Program, which calls for the creation of 450,000 new jobs for young Saudi men and women in non-state firms by 2020.

Graphic via Jadwa Investment.

Graphic via Jadwa Investment.

The private sector is also taking action to place young Saudis into jobs. A new initiative by the Riyadh Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI) is set to launch a “major campaign” aimed at training and qualifying young Saudis for work in certain industries, using data from the Ministry of Labor to target important sectors.

Mansoor Bin Abdullah Al Shathri, chairman of human resources and the labor market committee at RCCI, said via a statement to Arabian Business that the scheme “will be facilitated through a partnership with a number of public-sector companies, and will include training courses for job seekers to meet the necessary requirements.”

“Hundreds of thousands of opportunities will be available to Saudi nationals with the implementation of the decision to nationalise jobs in 12 business sectors early next year,” Al Shathri said.

But several industries that are likely to be big job creators in the coming years are just now being created or rejuvenated by the changes called for in the Vision 2030 and NTP. Analysts see large job opportunities coming online in healthcare, manufacturing, entertainment, travel, tourism and hospitality sectors, among others.

Last month, the government banned foreigners from taking jobs in 12 industries as Saudi Arabia aims to create more openings for jobs currently filled by expatriates.

It has not been announced how the new authority under the ministry of labor will work to encourage Saudis to take jobs in the private sector.