Saudi Arabia has recently announced its decision to localize 35 percent of the dental profession in the private sector, effective from March 10, 2024. This decision, implemented by the country’s Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development (MHRSD) in collaboration with the Ministry of Health, aims to create more job opportunities for both male and female citizens throughout the Kingdom.
The Ministry of Health will oversee the implementation of this decision, which is expected to enhance citizens’ participation in the labor market. Private sector establishments will have the opportunity to benefit from incentives and support programs provided by the MHRSD, which include assistance in recruitment, training, and career continuity. Additionally, the Ministry of Health will ensure that the implementation aligns with the requirements of the labor market and the specialization of the dental profession.
To encourage compliance, the MHRSD has issued a guide outlining the details of Saudization, the targeted professions, and the required localization percentages. Establishments are urged to adhere to these provisions to avoid statutory penalties imposed on violators.
This initiative reflects Saudi Arabia’s commitment to promoting employment opportunities for its citizens and strengthening their presence in key sectors, such as healthcare. By localizing the dental profession, the Kingdom aims to empower its workforce and contribute to the growth and development of the nation.
500,000 job opportunities for Saudis
Saudi’s minister of human resources and social development, Ahmad Al-Rajhi, announced that the country’s ongoing localization efforts have successfully created job opportunities for over 500,000 Saudi nationals in the private sector since 2019. Speaking at the Saudi Economic Association Conference in May 2023, Al-Rajhi revealed that the initiatives related to the labor market strategy will be finalized before the end of 2025.
The minister highlighted the significant progress made through the labor market strategy, which is reflected in positive economic indicators such as decreased unemployment rates, increased labor force participation, and improved workers’ productivity. Notably, the goals of women’s empowerment initiatives, originally set for 2025, were achieved ahead of schedule in 2022.
Saudi Arabia has surpassed the employment targets outlined in Vision 2030, with female workforce participation currently at 36 percent, surpassing the 2030 target of 30 percent. Localization is a key aspect of Vision 2030, aiming to enhance local content in various sectors and diversify the economy beyond oil. The strategy focuses on promoting the production of goods and services locally to boost competitiveness and create sustainable job opportunities.
As of October 2022, localization decisions have resulted in over 2.12 million Saudi workers being employed in the private sector. In February, the Cabinet approved a framework for granting incentives to encourage the localization of priority goods and services under the Vision 2030 strategy. This move has already shown positive results, with many Saudi companies achieving high Saudization rates.
One such example is Cruise Saudi, a Public Investment Fund-owned firm, which has achieved a Saudization rate of 71 percent since its launch in 2021. The company aims to create 50,000 direct and indirect jobs in Saudi Arabia by 2035, benefiting the local workforce.
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