A mall in Kuwait City. Parliament is set to approve an excise tax during its next session, which starts in October. Image Credit: Bloomberg

Manama: A Kuwait ban on recruiting expats under the age of 30 holding diplomas and higher degrees will come into effect in July.

The ban, announced last year, was scheduled to be implemented in January, but was postponed “to review some technical issues related to labour transactions”.

The only exceptions were menial jobs, and jobs that required no school diplomas, such as drivers and machine operators.

Sources at the Manpower Public Authority (PAM) said the situation was now clear, and the ban should be applied from July 1, Kuwaiti daily Al Jarida reported on Monday.

In calling for the ban, the authority said it aimed to attract experienced and qualified expatriates aged at least 30 to work in Kuwait, as well as to guide employers and private companies to employ Kuwaiti nationals and create jobs opportunities for young people, especially university graduates.

All applications for jobs in Kuwait will be processed through computers to ensure that those who are less than 30 years old are not accepted, the authority added.

More than two thirds of Kuwait’s total population of 4.5 million is made up of foreigners, mainly unskilled workers in the booming service and construction sectors.

The government has launched a drive to address the demographic imbalance, reduce reliance on foreigners and boost chances for Kuwaiti nationals to find jobs.

However, the high number of expatriates is posing challenges that are reportedly too formidable to tackle easily.