Saudi backs residency cap
Riyadh, February 12, 2008
Saudi Arabia's labour minister said Riyadh supported a residency limit on the millions of expatriate workers in the Gulf to prevent them from gaining a political voice in the region.
According to a report in The Gulf Daily News, our sister publication, Ghazi Al Gosaibi said he feared that in future the international pressure would force states in the region to enfraanchise expatriate workers.
'We don't want the day to come when we are forced to allow the foreign workers to be represented in our parliaments or municipal councils,' Al Gosaibi observed.
The foreign workers make up about 13 million or 37 per cent of the 35 million population in the GCC.
The minister, however, didi not specify how long they should be allowed to work in the GCC. But Bahrain's Labour Minister Majeed Al Alawi said in an interview last year that he supported a six-year residency cap.-TradeArabia News Service