Job sur­plus

Kuwait Times - - FROM THE ARABIC PRESS - By Dr Ibrahim Be­hbe­hani

Iwas not sur­prised by the num­bers that were pub­lished in some lo­cal news­pa­pers about the avail­abil­ity of more than 19,000 jobs for Kuwaitis, com­pared to the num­ber of peo­ple wish­ing to work in gov­ern­ment and pri­vate sec­tors which is es­ti­mated at around 18,000. The truth is, to the con­trary of what is be­ing pub­lished, it is true that there is a sur­plus, but it is only on pa­per be­cause the mood of the job ap­pli­cant is a de­ci­sive fac­tor. The ‘mood’ of some peo­ple who choose to wait un­til their pre­ferred job op­por­tu­ni­ties be­come avail­able is what con­trols the num­ber of job ap­pli­ca­tions, and not the of­fi­cial num­bers that are an­nounced by the Civil Ser­vice Com­mis­sion.

So, the Man­age­ment and Gov­ern­ment Re­struc­tur­ing Pro­gram; the state depart­ment that over­sees the state’s la­bor sup­port pro­gram, still has a mis­sion and a role to play to­wards se­cur­ing jobs for the gov­ern­ment em­ployee, as through it the cit­i­zen can se­cure the ac­cepted limit for his liv­ing. Here, we must dif­fer­en­ti­ate cases of em­ploy­ment be­tween those work­ing in the pub­lic sec­tor and those who work in the pri­vate sec­tor. The salary the pub­lic sec­tor em­ployee re­ceives will dif­fer from what he will re­ceive in the pri­vate sec­tor. For ex­am­ple, if a pri­vate com­pany pays him KD 500 for a job based on his aca­demic qual­i­fi­ca­tion, the same em­ployee will be en­ti­tled to a KD 700 al­lowance paid by the gov­ern­ment as la­bor sup­port. This means that his aca­demic qual­i­fi­ca­tion en­ti­tles him to an al­lowance that ex­ceeds his ba­sic salary.

Ev­ery­one knows that the law forces pri­vate com­pa­nies and es­tab­lish­ments to des­ig­nate cer­tain per­cent­age of its la­bor for Kuwaitis, so we see a large num­ber of them re­ceiv­ing salaries with­out work­ing, and this phe­nom­ena pro­duces two prob­lems: First is that among Kuwaitis who work in the pri­vate sec­tor, there are some who do not re­port to work, and the sec­ond is that some em­ploy­ers en­cour­age em­ploy­ees to be non-pro­duc­tive mem­bers. This hap­pens when you hear the em­ployer say­ing, “come sign in then go home, and you will re­ceive your salary at the end of month,” be­cause, at the end, he does not want his ser­vices. The pri­vate sec­tor es­tab­lish­ment needs nonKuwaiti pro­duc­tive em­ploy­ees, and who­ever says oth­er­wise, we tell him this is the mar­ket and th­ese are its con­di­tions.

My point be­ing, the la­bor sup­port pro­gram con­trib­utes to se­cur­ing a guar­an­teed fu­ture for our chil­dren and pro­vides them with a salary that gives the guar­an­teed fam­ily sta­bil­ity. Maybe, as the case is, what is re­quired is a re­view of em­ploy­ment man­age­ment and method, and what should be taken into con­sid­er­a­tion is the pro­por­tion­al­ity be­tween the mar­ket place and ed­u­ca­tional grad­u­ates, so that we do not have em­ploy­ment ac­cu­mu­la­tion in un­wanted spe­cial­ties.

We have dis­guised un­em­ploy­ment, sure, and we must ad­mit that and at­tempt to re­form the base, and fill true jobs with re­quired spe­cial­ties, pro­vided that it is met with pro­duc­tiv­ity that fits the job and ful­fill the cor­rect for­mula that is built on the mar­ket needs, with na­tional la­bor that car­ries out its du­ties ac­cord­ing to the rules. — Trans­lated by Kuwait Times

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