2005 News Story

Cabinet enacts new labor law

The Cabinet today approved a new labor law that aims to increase the number of Saudi nationals employed by companies in the Kingdom. Minister of Labor Dr. Ghazi Al-Qusaibi provided some details about the law in remarks following the Cabinet session. He said that the law extends protection to groups who were not covered under previous labor laws, including maids and disabled workers.

The new legislation requires that at least 75 percent of a company’s workforce be Saudi; the Minister of Labor, however, can reduce that percentage if it is not feasible. Businesses with 25 or more employees must hire at least four percent qualified disabled people, and companies with 50 or more female workers are required to establish day care facilities for children under six.

The law also significantly increases the number of vacation days workers receive, and bars the employment of juveniles under the age of 18.