HRH Prime Minister of Bahrain Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa has announced a new national employment programme which has been mainly designed to make citizens the first choice of employment in both private and public sectors.
Speaking at the weekly Cabinet meeting held in Gudaiybiya Palace, Prince Khalifa outlined four key initiatives within the National Employment Program, which include:
- Launching an awareness campaign to encourage citizens to register in the National Employment Programme
- Amending the unemployment insurance draft law (78/2006) in order to increase compensation fees
- Increasing fees associated with the Parallel Bahrainisation System and the Flexible Work Permit
- Redesigning Tamkeen’s Training and Wage Support Programme
The Minister of Finance and National Economy pointed out that the programme builds on the kingdom’s long-standing efforts to further improve citizens’ living standards, in line with HM the King’s comprehensive development programme.
The programme is in line with the directives of HRH the Prime Minister, and HRH Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Crown Prince, Deputy Supreme Commander and First Deputy Prime Minister.
Speaking at the event Jameel bin Mohammed Humaidan, The Minister of Labour and Social Development said the fees associated with the Parallel Bahrainisation System has been increased from BD300 to BD500 ($793 to $1,322), while the flexible work permit registration fees will be increased from BD200 to BD500, with a recurring monthly payment worth BD30.
Humaidan encouraged locals to register in the National Employment Programme, while affirming that the ministry continues to assess and monitor unemployment rates in accordance with international best practices.
Ghanem bin Fadhel Al Buainain, The Minister of Shura Council and Representatives Council Affairs also made remarks stressing that the proposed amendment to the Unemployment Insurance draft law (78/2006) represents a new step forward in increasing job opportunities for citizens.
Al Buainain said that the unemployment insurance to the local Bahrain youth has been increased considerably, reported BNA.
For university degree holders, the amount has been increased from BD150 to BD200, while for those without degree, the amount has risen to BD150 from the earlier BD150.
In a major move, the compensation fees paid to dismissed Bahraini employees has been hike to a maximum of BD1000 from BD500 previously. Also the compensation period has been extended from 6 to 9 months.
During the meeting, Zayed bin Rashid Al Zayani, the Minister of Industry, Commerce and Tourism spoke of the ongoing collaboration between the Ministry and the Chamber of Industry and Commerce to meet citizens’ interests.
“The National Employment Programme will facilitate new avenues for collaboration with the private sector, and emphasized that the program is centered around making citizens a preferred choice of employment in the labor market, while increasing their competitiveness and skill base,” he noted.
Ayman bin Tawfeeq Al Moayed, the Minister of Youth and Sports Affairs, said in line with the directive of HRH the Crown Prince, the ministry will continue to empower Bahrain’s youth with the skill-set they need to compete in a diverse market.
Dr Ibrahim bin Mohammed Janahi, the chief executive of Bahrain’s Labour Fund (Tamkeen), highlighted that the programme will pave the way for redesigning Tamkeen’s wage support program within one month.
He outlined that under the current Wage Support Program, Tamkeen’s contribution is focused on new graduates as well as experienced employees. This includes:
For New graduates
Tamkeen encourages companies to hire Bahrainis through the Wage Support Program, which contributes to the salaries of Bahrainis over the first three years of employment: 70 percent in the first year; 50 per cent in the second year; and 30 percent in the third year. Tamkeen’s contribution reaches up to BD500 per month
Through the Wage Support Program, Tamkeen allocates BD250 or 25 per cent of the salary for experienced Bahraini employees in the private sector, said the BNA report.