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Number of expatriates working in the private sector has slowed



The number of expatriates working in the private sector has slowed from around 7 percent in 2016 to 5.7 percent in 2017, and to only 2 percent in 2018 and 2019, according to official statistics.The statistics sent by the Ministry of State for Economic Affairs to the National Assembly showed that in 2016, the increase was about 100,000, falling in 2017 to 86,000, and the increase in 2018 amounted to 33,000, and in 2019 only about 24,000.

The total is currently 1.66 million workers in the private sector. Follow-up sources confirmed that this has several reasons, most notably the decline in economic activity in the past two years after the boom that prevailed earlier, especially when the oil prices hit record levels in 2013-2014, and the decline in economic growth are related to the reasons to increased fees on services that hit some expatriates who earned modest salaries, and as a result there has been a partial or total departure of families who have left the country entirely or the breadwinner has stayed behind while the family has left to ease the burden.

It is noteworthy that this has coincided with calls for increasing Kuwaitization and substitution, but this did not appear in the private sector as it appeared relatively in the public sector, because the number of citizens in the private sector did not rise, but fell from 72,549 in 2018 to 71,013 in 2019, i.e. 1,500 citizens left work in the sector in just one year.There are also several reasons, most notably the continuation of the public service in competing with the private sector in several factors, most notably financial advantages and practical flexibility.-A.T.


Two Filipinos arrested for flying drone over one of the vital facilities in Al-Zour



Two Filipinos have been arrested by personnel from the Vital Installations Security Department and have been referred to senior officials of the department for interrogation after they were caught flying a drone over one of the vital facilities in Al-Zour without a licence.The interrogations should include an earlier incident when a similar type of drone was seen flying over vital installations.It has been reported the Acting Director- General of the department Col Sa’fak Al-Azmi using monitoring devices in the presence of Assistant Director of the Department Colonel Musaed Shamroukh working at the Al-Zour Station saw a drone hovering over Al-Zour Power Station, identified its source of operation and arrested the two suspects.-A.T.


Lawyer files case to terminate the appointment of all expatriate legal practitioners



Lawyer Abdullah Marzouq Al-Rasheedi yesterday filed a case to force the Civil Service Commission to terminate the contracts of all expats working in government bodies and replace them with Kuwaitis, especially since many Kuwaiti lawyers are unemployed. Rasheedi said around 30,000 Kuwaitis holding law degrees work for the government and 6,000 others work for the private sector.

“What is the point of employing expats while considerable numbers of Kuwaitis with the same degrees, qualifications and experience are unemployed?” he wondered, claiming that many senior officials do not trust Kuwaiti workers. He alleged one of the health minister’s advisors is an expat who gets a monthly salary of KD 2,100 plus other incentives, hajj allowances and free accommodation.-K.T.


KISR has obtained a global patent in the Hydrogen storage in nanoscale metals



Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research (KISR) announced that the Nanotechnology Program of the Institute of Energy and Building Research in the Institute has obtained a global patent in the Hydrogen storage in nanoscale metals like magnesium. The Kuwaiti Institute has earned the patent from the United States Patent and Trademark Office, KISR said in a statement Thursday Kuwait, represented by KISR, ranks seventh on a par with South Korea in the list of the 10 most active countries in the world in the production, utilization and use of nanomaterials stored for hydrogen gas, the statement added.The statement confirmed the Institute’s interest in diversifying energy sources, especially new and renewable in order to improve the properties of magnesium and its ability to store hydrogen in quantities of weight up to more than five percent.-KUNA


KGL evicted from state-owned land measuring one million square meters



The concerned Ministry of Interior officials have executed a court order to evict Kuwait and Gulf Link Transport Company (KGL) from State-owned land measuring one million square meters as the company used the property illegally.

MP Majed Al-Mutairi affirmed the Parliament lauds such a decision as the legislature is always fighting against misusage of State properties and public funds. He affirmed that MPs paved way for exposure of erring companies through demands for the formation of committees to investigate suspicious commercial activities.He said the relevant parliamentary committees investigated this issue and submitted recommendations to the government, which resulted in the discovery of KGL’s violation.The MP asserted that he is vigilant in pursuing companies proven to have misused public funds and State properties in line with his constitutional rights and the power of the law.

Echoing his colleague’s statement, MP Abdul Wahab Al-Babtain emphasized that no one is above the law. He revealed that he contacted the head of Kuwait Ports Authority (KPA) who confirmed the land in question has been returned to KPA.-A.T.


Kuwait withdraws ranitidine, Zantac drugs from shelves



The ministry of health is suspending and withdrawing ranitidine medicines – namely Zantac – used to treat excessive stomach acid. Dr Abdullah Al-Badr, the assistant undersecretary for medicine and food supervision at the health ministry, said in a statement yesterday that the decision to pull these drugs from the market was made upon preliminary tests conducted at the department’s laboratories and reports by American and European authorities. Health authorities in other countries are currently trying to determine safe levels of the ingredient N-Nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA), included in food and some medical drugs, he said. He urged patients to seek their doctors’ help in prescribing alternative medicines. – KUNA


600 people violate the red traffic signal every day in Kuwait



Six hundred people of both sexes violate the red traffic signal every day in Kuwait, an average of 25 serious violations of this kind every hour.

The Traffic Planning and Research Department of the General Traffic Department has recorded about 145,000 traffic violations of crossing the red traffic light since the beginning of 2019 until the end of last August, which equals to 600 violations per day, of which 38 thousand violations are registered against female motorists or (27% of the total violations).The direct violations of skipping the red signal was about 20 thousand, by 18 thousand committed by male drivers and two thousand by females.

Indirect violations were 125 thousand. The males accounted for 79 thousand violations and females 36 thousand; and 10 thousand violations are registered in the names of companies. The sources also said money collected against these fines was 7.25 million dinars approximately. Much of the money collected in fines was for jumping the red traffic light. According to the sources, 300,000 people had violated the red traffic lights in 2017, and 273 thousand in 2018.-A.T.


Rocket blasted off with an Emirati--first Arab UAE astronaut entered the ISS



A Soyuz rocket blasted off yesterday from the Baikonur space center in Kazakhstan carrying an Emirati who  makes history as the first Arab on the International Space Station. The Russian rocket carrying the three-member crew took off as scheduled at 1357 GMT.The ship carrying NASA astronaut Jessica Meir, Oleg Skripochka of the Russian space agency Roscosmos and Hazzaa AlMansoori, a military pilot from the UAE, docked at the International Space Station about six hours later.

In Dubai, a crowd gathered at the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre to watch the launch, erupting in cheers and dubbing Mansoori a national hero. Some carried UAE flags. Dubai’s iconic Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest skyscraper, lit up the moment of blast-off. Mansoori will spend eight days on the ISS and will be the first Emirati and the first Arab on the orbiting laboratory, but not the first Muslim.

A Holy Quran, a UAE flag, pictures of his family, and a book by Ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al-Maktoum were among the few things he was allowed to pack for his space adventure.

Russian Orthodox priests blessed the spacecraft ahead of the launch, in a traditional prayer service often held before Russian rocket launches. The spacecraft was the last to blast off from the launch pad where Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin went off into space onboard the Vostok 1, becoming the first man in space in 1961. Mansoori is set to return to Earth with NASA’s Nick Hague and Russian cosmonaut Alexey Ovchinin on Oct 3. Skripochka and Meir are set to remain on the ISS until the spring of 2020.

The first Arab in outer space was Saudi Arabia’s Sultan bin Salman Al-Saud, who flew on a US shuttle mission in 1985. Two years later, Syrian air force pilot Muhammad Faris spent a week aboard the Soviet Union’s Mir space station. As part of its space plans, the UAE has also announced its aim to become the first Arab country to send an unmanned probe to orbit Mars by 2021, naming it “Hope”. In the long-term, it says it is planning to build a “Science City” to replicate life on Mars and aims to create the first human settlement on the red planet by 2117.

The International Space Station – a rare example of cooperation between Russia and the West – has been orbiting Earth at about 28,000 km per hour since 1998. Russia is resolved to keep its position as a leader of the space industry, particularly for manned space flights. 


Official working hours of the companies’ department at Farwaniya residency affairs changed



The Ministry of Interior’s relations and security information department said official working hours of the companies’ department at Farwaniya residency affairs will be changed from evening to morning – from 7:00 am to 2:30 pm. All concerned parties should comply with the new times for speedy processing of transactions.-A.T.


Offshore patrol vessel(OPV) ICGS Varaha launched

Offshore patrol vessel(OPV) ICGS Varaha

--Hari Lakshmanan N

IFL Kuwait job news

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh today formally commissioned the Coast Guard offshore patrol vessel 'Varaha' at the Chennai Port Trust.

Mr Singh congratulated the Indian Coast Guard and L&T shipyard for bringing 'Varaha' back overseas.

This is the fourth in the series of seven 98-m vessel awarded to Larsen and Toubro.The shipyard has already delivered the first three OPVs – ICGS Vikram, ICGS Vijaya and ICGS Veera – which have been commissioned to the Indian Coast Guard fleet during the FY2018-19. The shipyard will deliver all the seven ships by March 2021.

L&T is the first private Indian shipyard received an order valued at Rs 1432 crore (~USD200 million) for design and construction of seven OPVs from the Indian Ministry of Defence in March 2015.
ICGS Vikram, the first Make in India ship manufactured by a private company L&T.IFL Kuwait job news

ICGS Varaha will be manned by 14 officers and 89 crew. It will be commanded by Commandant Dushyant Kumar. The ship is planned to be based at New Mangalore under the administrative and operational control of Coast Guard Commander (West) Region.

ICGS Varaha will carry one twin engine helicopter and four high speed boats, including two inflatable boats, for boarding operation, search and rescue, law enforcement and maritime patrol.

Besides this, the ship has capabilities of carrying limited Pollution Response equipment to contain oil spill at Sea.

The ship has been designed to attain a maximum speed of 26 knots and has an endurance of 5,000 nautical miles.

Presently, the Indian Coast Guard has a fleet of 139 ships and 62 aircraft. Further, 56 ships are at various stages of construction at different Indian shipyards, according to a press release.

The role of the OPV is to conduct coastal and offshore patrolling, policing maritime zones, control & surveillance, anti-smuggling & anti-piracy operations with limited wartime roles.IFL Kuwait job news

The entire design and construction process has been certified by American Bureau of Shipping (ABS) as well as Indian Registrar of Shipping (IRS) and were overseen by the Indian Coast Guard’s resident team at Kattupalli.

L&T so far, 40 Interceptor Boats have been delivered out of the series of 54 Boats designed & built for the Coast Guard while the remaining 14 are also ready for delivery.

With the focus of Govt of India on Defence Exports, L&T is currently engaged in building High-Speed Patrol Vessels for exporting to a friendly nation in South-East Asia region as per our country’s “Look East – Act East“ policy and to empower the recipient nation to construct latter platforms indigenously.



Schengen visa exemption negotiations reach advanced stage



Kuwait has reached an advanced stage in negotiations with the European Union to exempt Kuwaiti nationals from the Schengen visa, said well-informed government sources. The government has been working hard for a while now to secure free travel in European countries by getting the Schengen visa exemption. The sources added that Kuwait’s foreign ministry had been conducting constant contacts and that the EU would issue a decision on exempting Kuwaitis form the Schengen visa soon as most EU countries would vote for the proposal within the next year. The sources explained that an EU meeting will be held soon to study all exemption applications including that made by Kuwait, adding that the committee in charge has already reviewed it, pointing out that all Kuwaiti visitors go to Europe for tourism, medical treatment, education or business, and that none of them has ever been reported as a refugee.-K.T.


Residence renewal to go online from October



Finally, more than 3 million expatriates working in the private sector can renew their residency electronically, in a step towards the completion of technical services and the application of e-government, to eliminate the paperwork and reduce the congestion in the corridors of ministries.

The Ministry of Interior, is preparing to launch a new system to renew the residencies of Article 18 for civil sector workers, in October, in order to serve more than 3 million expatriates in the country.This service, which will be launched by the Ministry of Interior through its website where it will be possible to renew the residence of the expatriate and his wife and children automatically without going to the passport offices/residence affairs in their governorates, nor carrying documents to review, this project is the largest and most important to keep up with the new vision of Kuwait towards the automation.

This project came after the success of the project to renew the residences of domestic workers, which was approved months ago.From year 2020 visit visas for relatives and parents will be made available online for expats.-A.T.


Extensive campaign against illegals in Jleeb results in arrest of 61 residence violators



In coordination with Public Authority for Manpower, Kuwait Municipality and the Ministries of Trade and Interior extensive campaign against illegals was carried out in Jleeb Al-Shuyoukh area and some construction sites in the Sabah Al-Salem area for past two days.During the campaign 61 residence violators were arrested in Jleeb area. Article 18 workers were arrested for working for different sponsor, 26 workers from private sector, domestic workers from article 20 and 15 absconders.-A.T.


Court sentenced two suspects for life for selling visas to 400 expats for KD 1,500 each



The criminal court yesterday sentenced a Kuwaiti and an Egyptian businessman to life and four others – two Egyptians, a Saudi and a Syrian – to three years in jail over human trafficking charges. The court accused the defendants of selling visas to 400 expats for KD 1,500 each.

Sentencing comes after case was filed by dozens of workers and Egypt has suspended sending workforce to Kuwait as Visa 18 small projects visas were sold of KD 1500 for 3 yrs by small scale entrepreneurs.Buying and selling visas is a criminal offense and yet many expats buy visas and are either not provided jobs or just a temporary job of 3 months probation period and later they are forced to look out for jobs in Kuwait market.


Kuwait went through the autumn equinox on Monday,marking the end of summer and the start of autumn



Kuwaiti Astronomer Adel Al- Saadoun said Monday that Kuwait went through the autumn equinox on Monday at 10:50 am (local time), marking the end of summer and the start of autumn, which will last until winter solstice on Dec 22.

Al-Saadoun told KUNA that the autumnal equinox on the northern hemisphere occurs when sunlight strikes perpendicularly to the equator, splitting even the day and night.The even day and night in Kuwait on the upcoming day Sept 28, will have the sun rising at 5:39 am and setting at 5:39 pm, continuing until Oct 16. Daylight hours will continue to decrease as nighttime increases, until the longest night of the next seasonal change on December 7, Al-Saadoun added.Since the sun is directly over the equator, from June, India’s northwest winds and the dry, hot and dusty climate on the Arabian Peninsula has been receding, he explained.-KUNA



Woman who used her beauty to lure passersby and then rob them arrested



Personnel from the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) have closed the curtain on the thefts committed by a gorgeous Jordanian woman over two years. According to the security sources the woman used her beauty to lure passersby and then rob them.

She would seek the help of passersby to help her carry her things saying she was unable to carry. The woman would then take the man to a lonely place, around the corner of a building and cling to him and seduce him and ‘rob’ him of his money or belongings and then do the disappearing trick.Many men did not submit a complaint to the police for fear of being involved with a mysterious woman, debauchery and immorality. The woman used the same modus operandi to rob her victims.

However, some of whom took the courage to complain gave different descriptions of the woman, because she changed her features with makeup. Police then began looking for the woman and identified all the sites targeted by woman and put the areas under surveillance. After the woman was arrested she was identified by the victims during a police lineup. Police have concluded that the woman was buying jewelry with all the stolen money and seized from her some receipts of gold ornaments purchases.-A.T.


MoH imposed new fee structure for sick leaves, certificates, licenses



The health ministry has implemented a new fee scheme that includes a KD 2 fee for authentication of sick leaves issued by the private sector. The new fees are for services offered by the medical council to expats, including KD 20 for medical examination for those applying to work in the public and private sectors; KD 5 for medical examination for those seeking disability aid and age estimation; KD 10 for “medically unfit”, “to whom it may concern” and proportion of disability due to injury certificates; and KD 5 to approve sick leaves issued by non-government doctors inside or outside Kuwait.

The health ministry also imposed fees for approving advertisements – KD 50 for three months for licensing ads for health-related products and KD 100 for licensing ads about companies or health facilities. The ministry also imposed fees for analysis at drug registration laboratories for medicines, health products, food supplements and medical supplies. Analysis of a registered product will cost KD 15 and KD 50 for non-registered products. The fee for reanalysis for the first time is KD 30 and KD 60 when the request is repeated.

The ministry approved a KD 30 fee for issuing import and export licenses for narcotic and psychoactive drugs and KD 100 for issuing licenses to trade in narcotic or psychoactive drugs, in addition to KD 10 for the narcotic and psychoactive prescription book for every 50 prescriptions and KD 5 for every 400 pages of the psychoactive drug register.

The ministry approved fees to issue certificates and their translation – a “good conduct” certificate will cost KD 10 per certificate, in addition to KD 10 for a “to whom it may concern” certificate and KD 10 for translating the license into English. The fees included charges for medical operations – permission to conduct a one-day surgery will be KD 200 per year, and its renewal will be for four years. Fees of KD 200 will be collected for issuing in-vitro fertilization permission and for freezing embryos.

The fees for registering medicines and pharmaceutical companies at the medical and plant medicines registration department are KD 500 for registering a company that has marketing rights and registering a new medicine – be it for humans or animals – and vaccines, besides KD 25 for registering a health product and medical device.

A KD 100 will be collected for registering a food supplement and issuing a certificate for free trade of medical and cosmetic products, KD 10 to register a cosmetic product and KD 150 for sound manufacturing practices for local manufacturing companies. KD 50 will be collected for duplicates or additional copies of a product, company or manufacturing site. – K.T.


Sri Lankan recorded his suicide live through his mobile phone in Kheitan



A Sri Lankan man recorded his suicide live through his mobile phone with his compatriot girlfriend in his flat in Kheitan.

The man had live connection with his girlfriend, who is staying in the same building, through his mobile phone. He stood on a box and tied his neck with a rope saying he would end his life.After a few minutes, he kicked the box and hanged himself. His girlfriend rushed to his flat and with the help of another Asian, they took him to Farwaniya Hospital but he died.A case was registered and investigations are ongoing to determine the circumstances which prompted the man to commit suicide.-A.T.


New ID cards for mandoubs--Residence Affairs Department



The Acting Director-General of the Residence Affairs Department Colonel Sheikh Abdullah Al-Malek Al-Sabah has issued an administrative order according to which new identities will be issued to company representatives (mandoubs) irrespective if the person is a Kuwaiti, an expatriate or anyone else. The new identities look different from the old ones, which looked similar to those which are used by military men and sometimes were exploited for wrong purposes.-A.T.


Thomas Cook, the world’s oldest travel firm, collapsed on Monday



Thomas Cook, the world’s oldest travel firm, collapsed on Monday, stranding hundreds of thousands of holidaymakers around the globe and sparking the largest peacetime repatriation effort in British history.

Chief Executive Peter Fankhauser said it was a matter of profound regret that the company had gone out of business after it failed to secure a rescue package from its lenders.

The UK’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) said Thomas Cook had now ceased trading and the regulator and government would work together to bring the more than 150,000 British customers home over the next two weeks.

“I would like to apologise to our millions of customers, and thousands of employees, suppliers and partners who have supported us for many years,” Fankhauser said in a statement released in the early hours of Monday morning.

“It is a matter of profound regret to me and the rest of the board that we were not successful.”

The government and aviation regulator said that due to the scale of the situation some disruption was inevitable. “Thomas Cook has ceased trading so all Thomas Cook flights are now cancelled,” the CAA said.

The demise of Thomas Cook marks the end of one of Britain’s oldest companies that started life in 1841 running local rail excursions before it survived two world wars to pioneer package holidays first in Europe and then further afield.

The firm now runs hotels, resorts and airlines for 19 million people a year in 16 countries. It currently has 600,000 people abroad, forcing governments and insurance companies to coordinate a huge rescue operation.

Pictures posted on social media showed Thomas Cook planes being diverted away from the normal stands, and being deserted as soon as they had landed.

Crippled by its 1.7 billion pounds of debt, Thomas Cook has been hit by online competition, a changing travel market and geopolitical events that can upend its summer season. Last year’s European heatwave also hit the company hard as customers put off last minute bookings.

The corporate collapse has the potential to spark chaotic scenes around the world, with holidaymakers stuck in hotels that have not been paid in locations as far afield as Goa, Gambia and Greece.

In the longer term it could also hit the economies of its biggest destinations, such as Spain and Turkey, leave fuel suppliers out of pocket and force the closure of its hundreds of travel agents across British high streets.

The British government and the aviation regulator have drawn up a plan to use other airlines to bring Britons home. In Germany, one of the biggest customer markets for Thomas Cook, insurance companies will take charge.


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