In the first six months of 2021, 6,158 Kuwait citizens left the private sector. Image Credit: Yasmena Al Mulla

Kuwait City: Statistics published by the Public Authority for Manpower (PAM) revealed that in the first six months of the year 6,158 citizens left the private sector, local media reported.

This comes at a time where the government is moving full steam ahead with the Kuwaitisation policy which aims at creating a 100 per cent local workforce in the public sector.

PAM stated that around 9,500 citizens have applied for jobs in the private and government sector since the start of the year.

According to statistics, one out of three Kuwaitis work in the public sector. Around 80 per cent of Kuwaitis stated that they prefer working in the public sector, according to a 2019 governmental report.

Over-dependence on public sector

Compared to the rest of the Gulf countries, Kuwait has the highest ratio of nationals working in the public sector. One out of three Kuwaitis work in the public sector, compared to Saudi Arabia where one out of five nationals are public sector employees and Oman where out of every 11 Omanis one works in the public sector.

The high demand for government jobs is due to the short working hours and the high pay, as Kuwaitis that work in the public sector receive on average 1,510 Kuwaiti dinars a month, compared to their counterparts in the private sector who receive an average of 1,191 Kuwaiti dinars a month.


According to a report released by the Civil Service Commission in September 2019, around 79 per cent of all employees working in the public sector are Kuwaitis, bringing them to a total of 297,335. Expats make up 21 per cent of the workforce with 34,347 expats working in the public sector.

Several politicians and government officials have adopted the Kuwaitisation policy as a way to also address the growing unemployment problem. In 2019, Kuwait saw a 0.11 per cent increase in unemployment compared to the previous year, when it was at around 2.08 per cent.