Top 5 Things A Filipino Nurse Must Know About “Saudization”

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Just recently, the Ministry of Health of Saudi Arabia announced that there are job vacancies available  for female Filipino nurses trained in special areas. However, most applicants are hesitant to pursue their job applications because they are well-informed about the present employment crisis, termed as “Saudization”,  that has enveloped the rich Arab country since June 2011. Although this is a serious issue that we have to deal with as a country, there are a lot of misconceptions that we have to clear out about this “Saudization” phenomenon before anything else. And as a nurse with a sole intention to educate my fellow nurses, I want to share this five essential information that you must know about the “Saudization”:


1. Saudization is a strict law but it will not cause massive displacement of Filipino nurses.

Saudization or the Saudi Nationalization Scheme (Nitaqat system) is the recent law implemented in Saudi that compels institutions and enterprises to fill-up their labor force with Saudi nationals. This is an answer to the country’s growing number of unemployed citizens. According to, companies which fail to comply with the said policy will not be allowed to apply for new, replacement or seasonal visa for their foreign workers nor can they change their foreign workers’ profession. They cannot also file an application to open new enterprises or branches. This in turn will inhibit them to hire foreign employees thus decreasing job offers in our country. On the upside, enterprises which are able to fulfill the said requirement can hire more foreign employees. For this reason, it is clear that “Saudization” will not cause massive termination of Filipino nurses and OFWs; only those who are working for companies that failed to comply with the requirements of Saudization have the chance to lose their jobs.

2. Saudization has been implemented for regulation purposes only so annual recruitment of Filipino nurses is still allowed.

The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) calmed the public by saying that the Saudization would not have an immediate impact on OFWs because it would be implemented in a gradual manner. Some areas are not yet affected of the law and several companies have successfully complied with the Saudization requirements so the demands for Filipino nurses and other skilled workers remain high.

3. Filipino nurses from non-compliant companies will be allowed to be rehired by other companies if they pass a certain standard.

Workers, who are employed on companies that are not compliant to the policy and yet have exceeded 6 years of stay in KSA, can still be hired by compliant companies without the permission of their employers. (

4. The Philippine government, through the assistance of DOLE, is doing its best to save Filipino nurses and other OFWs from the wrath of Saudization.

The Department of Labor and Employment of the Philippines(DOLE) has taken measures to provide immediate assistance to OFW’s affected by this phenomenon. It has created an online registration system to put up a database which consist accurate information of the workers affected by Saudization. Moreover, DOLE also made an on-site re-employment assistance which helps transfer affected workers to compliant companies, and reintegration assistance for returning OFW’s. (

5. There is a possibility that Saudization might fail, at least according to predictions of some Arab nationals.

A news report published on has revealed that after six months of implementation, labor officials in Saudi are saying that Saudization is so far a failure. As a matter of fact, 50% of private companies in Saudi are non-compliant with the scheme despite warnings that they would not be issued new work visas. This information appeared in an article in Emirates 24/7, a news site based in Dubai, UAE. In addition to that, other nationalities have failed to imitate the quality of care that Filipino nurses provide to their patients so it won’t be surprising at all if KSA will one day announce that Saudization is no longer in effect.



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  • jose

    years ago bawal mag trabaho ang mga spouse na dependent sa asawa today ang mga spouse at anak ng OFWs na gumradweyt ng pinas ay pinpasok na sa work. ganyan talaga buhay sa saudi. buti nga di binlock sa visa palang eh, sa western countries pahirapan pang mag apply ng working visa.

    Philippines should stop sending its graduates abroad, instead make use of them in making the country the leading economy in Asia.

    Magtanong ka ng bata ngaun karamihan gusto mag abroad!

    • sarn

      kung ititigil ang pagsend ng graduates sa abroad, eh di maraming pamilya ang magugutom, ska ang dming graduate s pinas ang tambay .. hndi nmn kc gnun kadali ang cnasabi mo…magco-comment k lng, sablay ka pa…hayzzzzzzzz…

      • jose

        “..the Philippines has too many Colleges and Universities. An argument of what good is Quantity vs Quality.The reason for this proliferation of higher educational institution is because the educations purpose has been twisted or thwarted with the goal merely to get the graduate working out of the country to earn more money. The author makes a plea to return to the true purpose of education which is “to educate” for the purpose of graduating citizens interested in the progress of their Nation not just to go to another Country to get a better living only to become the lowest laborer in foreign soil.”

        isa ka ding talangka eh, tingin mo sarap ng buhay OFW, malayo sa pamilya? mas maraming pamilyang magugutom kung hindi natin isaayos ang lupang sinilangan kaya nga tayo pinag-aral para pa unlaring at palakarin bansa natin. isip isip ka muna bago ka magreklamong “ang hirap mag-abroad”. walang brain drain sa pinas, ginagamit lang sa kasamaan!

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