The solution for unemployment


Al-Madina newspaper

I READ this good news on the last page of Al-Madina newspaper recently: The period of waiting for employers to apply for recruitment visas after placing job advertisements in the media has been extended to 45 days in a move to support the Saudization program in private companies.

This news gives great hope for our unemployed sons and daughters. I spoke with an official in the Ministry of Labor and Social Development in the Makkah province. He said they have deployed about 120 inspectors to ensure employment of Saudis.

Unfortunately, I have not seen any of these inspectors. There is an important question: Have any of these inspectors visited big companies and groups? Have they able to enter any of these companies to find out how many jobs are available there for Saudization?

I believe that thousands employees come to these companies and institutions. How did they come? We don't know? So, the Ministry of Labor and Social Development should activate the role of inspectors and instruct them to visit all institutions and companies.

They will find out who dashed the dreams of our sons and daughters. They will find foreign consultants receiving huge salaries, accountants and other expat employees everywhere. Honestly speaking these employees have not given us anything except illusion. They have taken away the jobs of our children who have an important place in our hearts.

But Saudi employers did not take care of our sons and daughters properly and renewed work contracts of foreign workers. Here comes the significant role of the Labor and Social Development Ministry in resolving unemployment among citizens, which is a big social and economic issue.

The ministry can easily realize its Saudization program by activating inspections at private companies and institutions and replacing expats with Saudis.

But the problem with the Ministry of Labor Social Development is that it wanted to solve unemployment by causing another big problem. It wanted to tackle the problem from the bottom by Saudizing jobs of grocery stores, supermarkets and mobile shops.

There is nothing wrong in this policy but it has left major companies and institutions, which do whatever they want and pay huge salaries and attractive benefits and incentives to workers.

I am sure that our educated children who have graduated from reputable universities and have got training can do these jobs better than the expats. Unfortunately they do not get a chance to enter these big companies and get accepted to fill various jobs.

As a result of this situation our young men and women continue to talk and worry about unemployment.

I don't think the unemployment problem can be solved easily, as the solutions provided by the Labor and Social Development Ministry is far from the goal of saving generations from the misery of remaining jobless.

I know very well that the ministry's objective of nationalizing jobs is a noble one and we are all with the ministry to realize it. The problem is that the ministry has started the program from the grass roots instead of replacing expats holding high posts in major companies. It believes that Saudization of grocery stores and mobile phone shops would solve the unemployment problem. I would like to emphasize that the solution should start from the top.