BD20,000 fine planned for firms ‘not prioritising hiring of citizens’
Fines, as high as BD20,000, would be imposed on companies that are not giving priority to Bahrainis during recruitment if MPs get their proposal passed. The proposal has been made by MP Ghazi Al Rahma alongside four other fellow lawmakers including Mohammed Al Abbasi, Ali Ishaqi, Ahmed Al Amer and Yousef Al Thawadi.
They aim to amend the labor law to add an article that states that all employer needs to give Bahrainis priority in the event of a job opening and failing to do so would result in fines. The MPs stated that a fine of a minimum of BD5,000 and a maximum of BD20,000 must be imposed on violating companies. They added that renewal of work permits of violating companies should also come under scrutiny.
The lawmakers stated that the majority of the jobs in the private sector are going to expatriates, while Bahrainis are struggling to get jobs. According to them, the existing initiatives to reduce unemployment among Bahrainis is not enough. The government had, a few months ago, announced a major initiative to increase the hiring of new Bahraini graduates.
As per the initiative, if a business decides to hire Bahraini graduates registered with the Ministry of Labour, a number of benefits will be provided to ease the hiring process, including free professional training, as well as wage support for the candidates up to 70 per cent for the first year, 50pc for the second year, and 30pc for the third year.
The ministry would also provide administrative services, which include the candidate search and selection process and interview proceedings.