The Kuwait government's draft bill to reduce its expatriate population to 30 percent of the total amid a slump in oil prices and the coronavirus pandemic, could force around 8 lakh Indians to leave the country.
The Kuwait National Assembly's legal and legislative committee has approved the draft expat quota bill that says that the population of Indians in the country should not exceed 15 percent.
Committee has determined that the draft expat quota bill is constitutional and a comprehensive plan is being created to apply the change, Gulf News reported citing a local media report.
The report further said 'this could result in 800,000 Indians leaving Kuwait, as the Indian community constitutes the largest expat community in Kuwait, totalling 1.45 million'. Expats account for a significant 3 million of Kuwait's 4.3 million population.
Last month, Kuwait's prime minister, Sheikh Sabah Al Khalid Al Sabah, had proposed decreasing the number of expats from 70 percent to 30 percent of the population.
The anti-expat policy comes after the coronavirus outbreak as lawmakers and governmental officials in Kuwait call for reducing the number of foreigners in the country.
Data from Johns Hopkins University shows that more than 49,000 cases of coronavirus have been reported in the country. A majority of the infection cases have been reported among foreigners as migrant workers live in overcrowded housing facilities.
Kuwait has at least 650,000 expatriates, mostly from the Philippines, India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, who are employed as domestic workers alone.