By MUHAMMAD HUMAIDAN | ARAB NEWS
Published: Sep 29, 2010
JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia may start recruiting housemaids from Cambodia, Mali and Cote d' Ivore to reduce reliance on Southeast Asian countries, especially Indonesia and Sri Lanka, an official from the Saudi committee in charge of recruiting expatriate workers has told Arab News.
"Recruitment offices in Indonesia and Sri Lanka did not honor many of the agreements signed with them. Problems associated with housemaids from these countries are on the rise," Yahya Maqboul, a member of the Saudi National Committee to Recruit Foreign Manpower (SNCRFM), said on Wednesday.
Maqboul, who is also chairman of the recruitment committee at the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said a delegation from SNCRFM recently visited Mali as part of efforts to find manpower from other countries.
He, however, noted that while the recruitment of manpower from Mali and Cote d’Ivoire might not be cheaper than sourcing workers from Southeast Asian countries, it would not be difficult for citizens from these countries to adapt to Saudi habits and traditions.
He said this was because both African countries were predominantly Muslim and the traditions of their people were not completely different from those in the Kingdom.
The Malian minister in charge of citizens working abroad and African integration, Badra Alou Macalou, has invited members of the committee to visit Mali and discuss recruitment opportunities.
A press release from the Saudi Chamber of Commerce said an agreement to recruit workers from Mali might be concluded during the committee’s visit to the African country’s capital Bamako.
Members from the committee had earlier visited Cambodia and Cote d'Ivoire for the same purpose.