(MENAFN - Arab News) The Ministry of Labor has unveiled the mechanism of the Nitaqat Program that underlines expatriate recruitment clarifications and visa issuance rules for 50 sectors.
The Nitaqat Guide, with 162 pages, four chapters and four appendices has been published on the ministry's website. It has comprehensive details on the Nitaqat Program, Saudization and specifications for Saudization percentages in the private sector, exempted categories and details of escorts or dependents of expatriates already legally working in the Kingdom as well as the professions allocated to Saudis.
The ministry has limited the number of visas that can be issued to each business with regard to the facility's space, the kind of commercial activity and the number of Saudi employees. For instance, in the food and restaurant sector, visas granted to food services will be calculated according to the restaurant's total space, the number of utensils, machines and cash registers.
The ministry stated that if the restaurant occupied a space of less than 50 square meters, it will be given three visas for the main branch, and two visas for each outlet. If it occupies a space of 50 square meters to 150 square meters it will be given five visas for the main facility and four visas for outlets located outside city limits; each additional 100 square meters will be given two visas.
It further defined that restaurants with a space of 151 to 399 square meters will be given two visas, and those occupying a space of 400 to 700 square meters will be given three visas.
Patisserie restaurants will be given one visa for each oven, while grills and potato restaurants will be given a visa for each potato fryer, a visa for each two grills, and one visa for each donor kebab skewer.
The ministry said that if a facility has five small pots, it will be given one visa; three medium-sized pots each will qualify for one visa and each large cooking pot will also account for one visa.
The ministry said that restaurants that offer delivery service and have three cars registered in their names will be given one visa. Restaurants that cater to families will be given three visas if they occupy a space of more than 100 square meters. If the restaurant has an out of town branch which occupies a space of more than 150 square meters, it will be given one visa.
Apart from the food and restaurant sector, the ministry underlined the mechanisms and conditions of issuing visas to wholesale and retail trade. A facility of 50 square meters or less will be given one visa; an additional visa will be issued if another 50 meters are added to the original space, with one more visa for a 100 square meter increase in space.
The Nitaqat Guide aims to create a mechanism and a structure to calculate the level of nationalizing jobs, and set the conditions and procedures for recruiting expatriates. The guide said a large portion of the private sector was dissatisfied with the organization of the labor market. It also said that putting a ceiling on visas would obstruct economic growth.