Riyadh, capital of Saudi Arabia. Photo: Wikimedia Commons
Riyadh, capital of Saudi Arabia. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

The Saudi Arabian and Indonesian governments have come to an agreement that once more allows Indonesian domestic workers to work in Saudi Arabia.

On October 11, Saudi Arabia’s minister of labor and social development Ahmad bin Suleiman Al-Rajihi and Indonesia’s minister of manpower and transmigration Muhammad Hanif Dhakiri signed an agreement to strengthen bilateral relations between the two countries in the field of employment of domestic help, The Saudi Gazette reported.

In May 2015, the Indonesian government imposed a total ban on sending domestic workers to Saudi Arabia and other Gulf countries. The new agreement paves the way for new Indonesian domestic workers to head for Saudi Arabia for the first time in more than three years.

“The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has close relations with the Republic of Indonesia. Accordingly, we affirm the importance of cooperation and coordination in enhancing bilateral interests between the two countries,” Al-Rajihi said.

Al-Rajihi said the agreement is part of a framework that aims to protect rights and improve labor relations between workers and employers in accordance with the laws and regulations of both countries, in line with international conventions and treaties.

As of 2014, there were 1.5 million Indonesian domestic workers in Saudi Arabia. The majority of the 1.8 million domestic workers currently in Saudi Arabia are Indonesians and Filipinos.