The huge demand for domestic staff in Ramadan has resulted in shooting up wages of illegal housemaids up to 150 per cent, according to market sources.
Normally Saudi families depend heavily on the domestic staff during Ramadan. There are several agents actively engaged in the illegal trade of supplying housemaids locally. This turns to be a lucrative business for them at the expense of Saudi families.
Earlier, a family could hire a housemaid for a monthly salary not more than 2,000 Saudi riyals (Dh1,950). But now the salary ranges between 3,000 and 4,000 riyals.
Al Baddah said that efforts are underway to recruit housemaids from other countries such as Morocco, Nepal, Kenya, Ethiopia, Eritrea and Vietnam where the labour is comparatively cheaper.
Meanwhile, Mohammad Al Mohammadi, chairman of the recruitment committee at the Chamber of Commerce and Industry in the Eastern Province (Asharqiya), said that most of the recruitment offices had virtually halted hiring domestic staff from Indonesia and Philippines, a few months before the ban, and this was attributed to the exorbitant charges for recruitment.
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