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Kuwait City: During the Cabinet of Ministers weekly Monday meeting, the government announced that it will allow for the recruitment of new domestic workers starting January 17. The resumption comes after Kuwait halted the recruitment of new domestic workers almost more than 10 months ago. Since the ban was put in place compelled with travel restrictions, many domestic workers within Kuwait have left their current employment and entered the black market.

Black market surge

Due to the closure of recruitment agencies, brokers have been providing domestic workers’ services illegally and at a high price, thus taking advantage of the lack of competition.

These brokers have been advertising the services of domestic workers for 25 Kuwaiti dinars per hour and 250 Kuwaiti dinars per month.

The illegal domestic workers’ network divides the sum between the broker and the domestic worker. The domestic worker gets 10 Kuwaiti dinars for four hours of work and 15 Kuwait dinars goes to the broker, a source told Al Qabas.

A source from the Public Authority for Manpower pointed out that the domestic workers entered Kuwait through recruitment agencies and then they quit their jobs, thinking that they will be able to make more money working for various employers rather than just one.

Previous recruitment bans

This is not the first time Kuwait has placed a ban on recruitment of domestic workers from abroad.

In April 2019, Kuwait added Ethiopia, Burkina Faso, Bhutan, Guinea and Guinea-Bissau to the list of banned countries bringing the total to 20. According to Migrant Rights, the bans are put in place mainly due to the fact that these countries lack embassies and labour corporations in Kuwait.

At the beginning of 2020, the Philippines temporarily halted the recruitment of domestic workers to Kuwait after a Filipino domestic worker was sexually abused and killed by her emp