The Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs has said it will require foreign companies operating in Iraq to ensure that local Iraqis make up at least 50% of their work force, in a bid to reduce unemployment in the country.
Official figures indicate that Iraq has more than 25% unemployment with unofficial statistics indicating up to 40%; the figure in the Kurdish region is around 14%, according to the report from AKnews.
"The ministry has decided to force foreign companies operating in Iraq to hire 50 percent of their total employees from the Iraqi work force" said Minister of Labor and Social Affairs Nassar al-Ruabie.
The number of the jobless in Iraq is up to 990,000, he said.
He also highlighted a draft law submitted to the Council of Ministers which provides for a IQD150 billion [about US$12.5] soft loan fund to encourage small businesses.
Meanwhile in Basra, the Investment Commission has specified that foreign investors wishing to employ foreign staff, even where they are below the 50% limit, must comply with the following:
1- The investor should identify a job description for every available job opportunity required in the project.
2- This should be announced in three official newspapers to fix an appointment for an interview.
3- BIC should attend job interviews as an observer.
(Source: AKnews, Basra Investment Commission)