The Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development (HRSD) announced that the labor reform initiative will come into force on Sunday, March 14, 2021.
The initiative aims to improve the contractual relationship between employers and expatriate workers in the labor market.
The ministry launched the labor reforms initiative on November 4, 2020, renovating the 70-year old sponsorship system. The initiative allows improved job mobility and enables the issuance of exit and re-entry visas and final exit visas without the employer’s consent.
These services will be available through the Absher and Qiwa online platforms and cover all expatriate workers in private sector establishments. The new initiative applies to all expatriate workers in the private sector except domestic workers including private drivers, home guards, domestic workers, shepherds, gardeners, and farmers.
The exit and reentry service allows an expatriate worker to travel outside the Kingdom by submitting an application and informing the employer electronically. At the same time, the final exit visa service allows an expatriate worker to leave the Kingdom during the validity period of the work contract or immediately after its termination, in addition to the possibility of leaving the Kingdom without a work contract.
The new initiative allows an expatriate worker’s employment mobility through the transfer of service to another job upon the expiry of his work contract without the employer’s consent.