KSA Update: Saudisation of IT and Communication Roles

The Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development (“MHRSD”) has issued Ministerial Resolution number 28889 dated 18/2/1442H corresponding to 5 October 2020 (the “Resolution”) which will localise certain information and communication technology (“ICT”) roles in the private sector. The Resolution will come into effect on 17/11/1442H corresponding to 27 June 2021. This follows the decisions relating to the Saudisation of a number of dentistry and engineering roles in recent months.

The Resolution applies to all employers with five or more workers and targets roles related to information technology engineering, communication engineering, application development, programming and analysis, technical support as well as jobs related to the technical functions of communications. Under the Resolution, 25 per cent of targeted ICT roles will need to be localised by 27 June 2021. The Resolution is accompanied by a guide which describes the specific roles that will be Saudised. The MHRSD has also set a minimum wage of SAR 7,000 for specialised professions and SAR 5,000 for technical roles for any Saudi nationals who are employed to meet the Saudisation quotas required by the Resolution.

Key Takeaways

The Resolution is the latest measure by the MHRSD to increase employment opportunities for Saudi nationals. It has been introduced taking account of the number of Saudi nationals who are graduating with ICT qualifications and the MHRSD seeks to create 9,000 jobs through the implementation of the Resolution. Private sector companies that operate in the ICT sector will need to ensure they understand which roles within their organisations will be subject to the Saudisation requirements and review their workforce planning and recruitment strategies to ensure they are compliant with the new Saudisation requirements when the Resolution comes into effect in June 2021.

The Employment & Incentives team in the KSA regularly advises on all aspects of the employment relationship. Our specialist Technology, Media & Telecommunications team also advises on all legal matters relating to information and communication technology. 

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