Why do expatriates grab all the highly paid jobs in Saudi Arabia?

Saudis are frustrated by the fact that expats living here are appointed at the high salaried job. In our own country, Saudis are denied such vital jobs and expats tend to grab them. Isn’t this discrimination against our nationals?

Why do our authorities, our firms, and industries hire expats at highly paid posts and not Saudis? The frustration among Saudi nationals over the very issue is quite visible on social media. Saudi Arabia is one of the countries of the Gulf where people are quite active on social media.[irp]

They use the platform of social media to address their issues. One of the leading issues on social media now a day is the hiring of expats on highly paid jobs. Recently a Twitter campaign where people protested against the high pay of a Lebanese in Saudi Arabia was launched.

He was earning as much as SR 900,000 per year! People used a hashtag stating Lebanese earning SR 900,000. They questioned the authorities that why such a vital job was given to an expat than a Saudi? Don’t Saudis deserve to earn high in their own country? Should not they be given priority?

People also highlighted the salary of a British national lady who had been appointed at Strategic planning office held by Government. The lady was earning SR 120,000 per month. I do remember the hashtags like expatriate earning SR 36,000 a month in Saudi Arabia.

The expats in Saudi Arabia are appointed at high posts and earn a lavish amount of money per month. I do not mean to say that the expats are deliberately given more salary than Saudis. But the fact is that some vital job opportunities are confined to expats.

Such jobs have an attractive salary scheme not only in Saudi Arabia but in the rest of the world. The issue is not the high salary attached to such jobs, the issue is that why Saudis are not serving at such executive posts? 

Well, we have to admit the fact that Saudi Arabia is a country that does not have sufficient qualified personals to fill some of those jobs. To serve at such vital positions, one needs to be highly qualified and shall have great skills. 

When we don’t have sufficient experts in our country, only then we have to seek the assistance of foreigners.  If you see, Saudi Arabia is among those countries where expats would dream about having a job, only because finding such a job is relatively easy.

But then the question is why do we not have qualified executives Saudis? Well, this is simply because we lack specialized institutions. Only if we have institutions that could train people to undertake such jobs, we won’t be facing such a dilemma!

We need to have institutions where people are trained to get expertise necessary to be appointed to jobs like a specialist of strategic planning. The private sector is reluctant to establish such institutes because such an investment would give them a return in future only, while the market is already filled with specialized expats willing to undertake the vital jobs.

It is a wake-up call for our government. Our government itself should establish such training institutes so that we can soon have Saudis well specialized to undertake high paid jobs.

Source: Saudi Gazette

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Steve has vast experience in writing about Saudi rules, regulations, guides, and procedures.