Employers in Saudi Arabia who do not provide health insurance to employees and their dependents may be banned from recruitment permanently, Al-Madinah Arabic daily has reported.

 The Council of Cooperative Health Insurance (CCHI) has formed an inspection committee with the Ministry of Labor and Social Development to ensure that all employers in the Kingdom provide health insurance to their employees and their families, said CCHI spokesman Yasser Al-Maarik.

“The law applies to all employees whether Saudis or expats. There are penalties for breaching the law. Employers may face fines up to the cost of insurance and may be banned from recruitment rights permanently or temporarily,” said Al-Maarik.

He said that inspection teams will regularly inspect employers to ensure that they adhere to labour laws and the CCHI rules and regulations.

“We constantly try to improve our services to provide the best for our clients. Clients can benefit from our service by using their national IDs or residence permits without the need for any other card once they register,” said Al-Maarik.

He also said the council is working on improving its system to track violations.

“We are working on digitizing the whole process of recording violations so we have a permanent record of violators and their penalties. Employers with violations will not be allowed to recruit any new employees or provide health insurance to new employees until they pay off their dues for the violations they committed,” said Al-Maarik.

“We are working on raising awareness about the importance of health insurance and the rights and responsibilities of both the employers and the employees when it comes to health insurance,” said Al-Maarik.

Private sector employers will have to sign one health insurance contract, which should include employees and their dependents.

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