The cost of recruiting a housemaid from Sri Lanka has crossed the barrier of SR23,000 per visa during the past five months making it the highest among all manpower exporting countries, Makkah daily reported quoting market sources.
“This has surpassed the cost of recruiting housemaids from the Philippines which used to be SR19,000 per work visa,” said Yahya Al-Maqbool, chairman of the recruitment committee of the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI).
He said the cost of labor recruitment from Sri Lanka is going up while it is dropping to SR3,000 and SR7,000 from countries like Sudan, Egypt and Bangladesh for recruitment of drivers.
Maqbool attributed the huge cost difference to the geographic distances because of the air ticket charges and the complicated contracting procedures in some of the manpower exporting countries.
“Some recruitment brokers exploit the Kingdom’s need for housemaids so they tend to increase their charges,” he added.
Maqbool said it is next to impossible to control the recruitment costs taking into consideration the different charges between recruitment offices themselves which will have to return the housemaid back home in case of a failed probationary period.
“This is an extra cost on the offices so they increase their charges to compensate when anything like this happens,” he explained.
The chairman said the hurdles put by some favorable countries before recruitment of house helps, drive the others to up the charges of their housemaids.
“When brokers in some exporting countries feel that our recruitment offices are facing some problems, they immediately increase their recruitment charges by at least $500 per visa,” he said.
Maqbool recalled that recruitment from the Philippines was the highest before it was knocked out by Sri Lanka.
“This, however, does not mean that housemaids from Sri Lanka are the most favored or they are too much in demand but because of the current difficulties of importing house helps from the former country,” he said.