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8 lakh Indians to leave Kuwait? Here's all you need to know about Kuwait's Residency Law

The Kuwait National Assembly’s legal and legislative committee has approved a draft ‘Quota Bill’, which aims to expel a significant portion the country’s expat population.

July 06, 2020 / 04:45 PM IST
Kuwait (Image: Snap/Flickr)

Kuwait (Image: Snap/Flickr)

The Kuwait government’s new anti-expatriate policy may displace up to eight lakh Indians. Notably, of the Gulf country’s three-million-strong expat population, Indians constitute 1.45 million, and around 800,000 of them could reportedly be forced to leave.

The Kuwait National Assembly’s legal and legislative committee has approved a draft ‘Quota Bill’, which aims to expel a significant portion the country’s expat population. Indians being the largest group are facing the biggest impact, and the bill states that no more than 15 percent Indians can be a part of the expat population.

The move is also in line with Prime Minister Sheikh Sabah Al Khalid Al Sabah’s statement in June, which proposed to reduce Kuwait’s expat population from 70 percent to 30 percent. Lawmakers and government officials have grown increasingly vocal against foreigners in the country after the coronavirus pandemic, the report added.

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Here is all you to know about the 'Quota Bill':

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> The Kuwait government’s new anti-expatriate policy may displace up to eight lakh Indians.

> Known as the Quota Bill, Kuwait National Assembly’s legal and legislative committee has on July 2 approved a draft bill which states that no more than 15 percent Indians can be a part of the expat population.

> Notably, of the gulf country’s three-million-strong expat population, Indians constitute 1.45 million, and around 800,000 of them could reportedly be forced to leave.

> Kuwait's Prime Minister Sheikh Sabah Al Khalid Al Sabah had in June proposed to reduce the Guf state's expat population from 70 percent to 30 percent.

> Lawmakers and government officials have grown increasingly vocal against foreigners in the country after the coronavirus pandemic.

> Another draft bill by the interior that proposes changes to “upgrade the residency law” will also be forwarded to the National Assembly, Interior Minister Anas Al-Saleh was quoted as saying.

> The second draft law calls to “encourage” only those expats needed in the country and “benefit from neighbouring and advanced countries”.

> Assembly Speaker Marzouq Al-Ghanem had earlier told Kuwait TV that it would be “difficult” to implement specific percentages for different nationalities. The previous bill, however, assigns specific percentages.

> Ghanem told the daily that “Kuwait has a real problem in its population structure” and 1.3 million of expats are “either illiterate or can merely read and write”. This is likely to be a jab at 650,000 workers from Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka and the Philippines, employed as domestic workers in the country.

> Ghanem added that the numbers would be decreased gradually, going from a 70 percent (at present) expat population this year, to 65 percent next year and so on.

> Recruitment of foreigners will also be restricted to specialised fields.

> The new bill is also expected to come down heavily on “visa traders” and MP and head of the Assembly’s manpower resources development committee Khalil Al-Saleh has said the practise which “amounts to trafficking in persons” will be eradicated and “must vanish”.

> Ghanem added that the Assembly is “determined” to finish the process before Assembly term ends in October 2020. Notably, elections are scheduled for November.

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Moneycontrol News
first published: Jul 6, 2020 04:01 pm

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