Saudi not to renew expat visa after 6 years

Around 90 per cent of the private sector labour force in Saudi Arabia is foreign (FILE)

Saudi Arabia's labour minister says the kingdom will not renew work permits of expatriate workers who have been in the country for six years or more, a step aimed at boosting job opportunities for Saudis.

The pan-Arab daily Al Hayat on Monday quoted Labor Minister Adel Fekyeh as saying unemployment in the kingdom is 10.5 per cent.

Fekyeh said 90 per cent of the private sector labour force is foreign, and the country's 8 million foreign workers send home roughly $26.7 billion a year. It was not clear how many would be affected.

Saudi Arabia's king has pledged over $80 billion to boost the quality of life for his citizens, including job creation and new housing.

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