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Kuwaiti nationals in private sector to boost economy

About 80 percent of the 23,000 Kuwaitis who enter the workforce each year go to the public sector
By Bernd Debusmann Jr
Sun 17 Dec 2017 01:20 PM

An increasingly balanced labour market for Kuwait nationals across the public and private sectors will bring fiscal benefits to Kuwait and the wider GCC, according to a new report from management consultancy Tri International Consulting Group (TICG).

The report by TICG - a joint company of the Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA), Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development (KFAED) and Oliver Wyman – found that a shift of public sector employees to the private sector will help reduce the wage bill and will give the government greater opportunity to reform its economy and diversify.

Each year, about 23,000 Kuwait nationals enter the workforce, with about 80 percent entering the public sector, attracted by job security, lower working hours and higher entry-level salaries.

“Labour market reform is now a key pillar in Kuwait’s economic and financial sustainability plan, and we see ample opportunities for Kuwait nationals to shift into the private sector through short-term initiatives by the government,” said TICG General Manager and Oliver Wyman partner Jeff Youssef.

“Labour market policy affects nationals, businesses and governments, where each party has different and often opposing interests,” he added. “Sustaining high levels of human capital productivity and a flexible and dynamic labour market, which can adapt to technological change, is fundamental for global economic integration among Kuwaiti nationals.”

The report notes that for the Kuwaiti government to reduce financial pressures related to the large civil servant workforce, a “concerted effort” must be made to transition Kuwaiti nationals to higher private sector employability levels.

“This requires an extensive and far-reaching reform plan, across the labour market, the economy, and the education system,” Youssef added.

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Last Updated: Tue 19 Dec 2017 10:40 AM GST

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