Expats control 75% of Jeddah vegetable market
Ahmad Al-Silmi, head of the inspection committee at the Ministry of Labor’s branch in Makkah, says one of the important obstacles that face the Job Nationalization Committee at Jeddah’s vegetable market is the dominance of foreign work force, which conducts 75 percent of the sale and purchase operations, either inside the market or through the purchase and distribution processes outside the central market.
He added that the dominating foreign labor force falls into two categories. The first one buys fruits and vegetables in large quantities and then distributes them to vendors who sell them in front of mosques, popular markets or in neighborhoods. The second one buys large quantities to sell the goods inside shops and distribute part of them to contracted restaurants, hotels and hospitals inside or outside Jeddah.
Al-Silmi said authorities have arrested a number of expatriates inside the market in the auction yard with large amounts of money in their possession.
He warned merchants against moving their operations out of Jeddah, saying the government will not allow the food security of the Jeddah city to be jeopardized.
Naser Al-Jarallah, director general of the slaughterhouses and public benefit market at the Jeddah Secretariat, said one of the most important goals of the Job Nationalization Committee is to check irregular foreign labor that buys and sells fruits and vegetables with the intention to manipulate the market and indulge in speculation.