Dental Tribune International

Dental profession to be localised, says Saudi labour minister

By Dental Tribune International
February 06, 2020

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia: Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Labour and Social Development Ahmed bin Suleiman Al-Rajhi has announced a decision, taken in partnership with the Ministry of Health, to gradually localise the dental profession in the country. This is planned to happen in two stages.

The first phase will target the localisation of 25% of the institutions with effect from 26 March 2020, and the second phase will target the localisation of 30% of the institutions with effect from 20 August 2020. Arab News reported that the ministry’s spokesperson, Khaled Aba Al-Khail, said that the decision to localise the dental profession would apply to institutions where the number of expatriates exceeded three dentists.

The decision is in line with the initiative to localise professions, one of the ministry’s projects in partnership with the Ministry of Health, the Council of Saudi Chambers, the Saudi Commission for Health Specialties and the Human Resources Development Fund. According to the news outlet, “the aim is to provide suitable job opportunities for citizens in vital disciplines”. It stated: “Al-Khail pointed out that the ministry would take all necessary measures to ensure the institutions’ commitment to implement the decision”.

This is not the first time that doctors in Saudi Arabia have been affected by such a law. In 2017, government hospitals were forbidden to hire more expatriate doctors, as too many Saudi medical professionals were unemployed.

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