The Saudi Initiative for Mitigating COVID-19 Impact: HR Development Fund

The HR Development Fund in Saudi Arabia is among multiple government authorities that have announced new initiatives to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on the private sector. The Kingdom’s 30-program initiative is unprecedented and has recorded major success in early inspections, as Saudi Arabia ranks first consumer confidence globally. The HR Development Fund has devised a series of plans in an initiative to support, employ, train and empower Saudis, investing SR5.3 billion in the initiative. 

The Initiative 

The initiative aims to support private sector employees whose employment began as of June 1st, 2019 with SR1 billion. 

30% of a qualified employee’s salary will be paid during the first and second year of employment (24 months) according to the following: 

  1. The monthly salary of the qualified employee is between SR4000 and SR15000. 
  2. The value of contribution equals 50% of the salary or a maximum of SR3000, whichever is lower. 
  3. Back payment for qualified employees employed as of June 1st, 2019 occurs starting with the current month until all previous months are paid and once the back payment period is cleared, payment for current months resumes during the 24 month announced period. 
  4. All private sector organizations not suspended by the Ministry of HR and Social Development are qualified for the contributions. 
  5. The initiative includes all full-time vocations whether in office or from home.
  6. 10% is added to the following cases: female workers, the handicapable, small town employment, SME employment. 

Qualified Employees

Employees can apply through the national platform for employment, Taqat. They must meet the following conditions: 

  1. Applicant must be a Saudi national registered with Taqat. 
  2. Applicant must be between the age of 18 and 60. 
  3. Applicant must either be a student, a business owner or a government worker, in accordance with the records of the Ministry of HR and Social Development. 
  4. Applicant must be registered at GOSI with the current employer as of July 1st, 2019 or after. 
  5. Applicant must not be a beneficiary of any previous contributions by the Fund. 

The HR Development Fund also announced further initiatives to support, employ, train and empower private sector workers, investing SR2 billion benefiting 100,000 private sector job seekers, adding options and necessary tools to work remotely. Another SR1.5 billion is invested to support 100,000 job seekers, and SR800 million is dedicated to recruit 100,000 trainees at the Fund’s training program. Applicants can register at the HR Development Fund’s platform.