Saudi interior minister, Kazakh president meet in Astana

Saudi Arabia’s Interior Minister Prince Abdul Aziz bin Saud bin Naif meets Kazakhstan’s President Nursultan Nazarbayev in Astana on Thursday. (SPA)
Updated 02 November 2018

Saudi interior minister, Kazakh president meet in Astana

  • They discussed the enhancement of cooperation between the two countries and the latest developments at the international arena
  • Nazarbayev underscored the contribution of Prince Abdul Aziz to the strengthening of relations between the two nations

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia’s Interior Minister Prince Abdul Aziz bin Saud bin Naif met with Kazakhstan’s President Nursultan Nazarbayev in Astana on Thursday.
The minister conveyed the greetings of King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to the president, and their wishes of constant progress and prosperity to the government and people of Kazakhstan.
During the meeting, they discussed the enhancement of cooperation between the two countries and the latest developments at the international arena.
Nazarbayev underscored the contribution of Prince Abdul Aziz to the strengthening of relations between the two nations.
“Saudi Arabia is our crucial and reliable partner in the Islamic world. We are interested in further deepening of political and economic ties between our states. Therefore, I have invited King Salman and the crown prince to visit Kazakhstan,” said Nazarbayev in a press statement.
The meeting was attended by Saudi Ambassador to Kazakhstan Dr. Thaher bin Mutesh Al-Enezi and President of the National Security Committee of Kazakhstan Karim Massimov.


Saudi employers given green light to cut wages, hours

Updated 07 April 2020

Saudi employers given green light to cut wages, hours

  • But businesses hit by coronavirus can change contracts only with employees’ consent, ministry says

JEDDAH: Saudi private-sector employers whose businesses have been crippled by the coronavirus pandemic have been told they can cut their employees’ wages and working hours.

But they may do so only with the employees’ consent, and the reduced wages must accurately reflect the number of hours worked, the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development said.

The ministry also moved to allay fears among some private sector staff, both Saudi and expatriate, that unscrupulous employers could use the coronavirus crisis to exploit their workers.

“Workers can report any violation through the ministry’s website, channels and social media platforms,” Saad Al-Hammad, director of Human Resources Affairs at the ministry, told
Arab News.

In addition, employers who have benefited from state subsidies, such as the SR9 billion ($2.4 billion) fund created last week to compensate Saudi workers for the effects of the pandemic, may not terminate employment contracts. Employees, however, retain the right to do so.

The ministry said its aim was to protect employees from dismissal or loss of contractual benefits during the pandemic. It would continue to regulate the labor market, mitigate the economic effects of the virus outbreak on the private sector and protect the interests of both parties in the labor relationship, it said.

Saudi legal counsel Dimah Talal Al-Sharif said amending the contractual relationship between employer and employee in this way was permissible under the legal concept known as “force majeure,” which applied to the coronavirus pandemic.

“The ministerial decision aims to limit any attempt to tamper with people’s rights as employees, and to define the limits that both parties must agree on first, while also reflecting the reality,” Al-Sharif told Arab News.

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