Stock Kuwait expats people
Expats wait to board a bus at a station in Kuwait City. Image Credit: AFP

Dubai: More than 250,000 expats left Kuwait for good during 2021, Kuwaiti media reported.

Of them, 205,000 were working in the private sector, 7,000 were with the public sector and 41,200 were domestic workers. This has resulted in severe shortage in some professions, an issue that got worsened by the COVID-19 pandemic and the suspension of recruiting expats.

According to the report, the private sector suffered a significant decrease in number of employed, while government departments were unable to attract national labour to fill the jobs. Meanwhile, the number of Kuwaitis joining the labour market has increased by 23,000, with most of them joining the government sector.

According to a report published by Al Qabas newspaper, there are 2.7 million people in Kuwait’s labour market, 16.2 per cent of whom are Kuwaitis, while a large proportion of expat employees are domestic workers with a total of 639,000, constituting 22.8 per cent of the labour force.

The newspaper quoted a report issued by the Public Authority for Manpower that said 21,000 Kuwaitis are registered as job seekers, 48.3 per cent of whom or 10,162 want to join in the private sector, a high percentage compared to 9 years ago.

Earlier last month, Abdul Aziz Al Ali, the Director-General of the Federation of Domestic Labour Recruitment Offices, said the local market suffers from a severe shortage of domestic workers. Al Ali said the Ministry of Interior and the Public Authority for Manpower are exploring new markets to recruit domestics and are showing a keen interest in signing memoranda of understanding with African countries.