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Tue 4 Oct 2016 12:54 PM

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Saudi civil servants get 11-day salary cut following calendar switch

Government employees will undergo job performance evaluations and will no longer have immunity from dismissal

Saudi civil servants get 11-day salary cut following calendar switch

Saudi Arabia has this week adopted the Gregorian calendar for paying civil servants as part of its austerity measures policy.

Having banned the use of Gregorian calendar system for government departments and private companies in 2012, the adoption of the Gregorian calendar instead of the Islamic Hijri calendar makes the working month longer for Saudi government workers, and also includes loss of 11 salary days, local Saudi newspapers reported.

The Hijri calendar consists of 12 months of 29 or 30 days depending on the sighting of the moon, which means an Islamic year is days shorter than the Gregorian calendar, accepted all around the world.

The move brings public pay in line with the way private sector employees are paid.

The kingdom also introduced an assessment for the 1.5 million Saudis working in the government sector to determine eligibility for a bonus or pay increase. The employees will undergo job performance evaluations and will no longer have immunity from dismissal.

Last month, Reuters reported that King Salman announced 20 percent cut in salaries of ministers and cut back of financial perks for civil servants.