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Saudi Arabia: Equal opportunities

Updating author: Sara Khoja, Clyde & Co LLP
Original author: Al Tamimi & Company

See the legal services provided by the author of XpertHR International > Saudi Arabia, including any discounts/offers for subscribers.


  • Employment legislation states that all Kingdom of Saudi Arabia citizens are "equal in their right to work", and prohibits discrimination in pay between male and female workers who perform work of equal value and discrimination on the ground of disability. (See General)
  • "Misconduct or an act infringing on honesty or integrity" by an employee is grounds for summary dismissal, which is likely to cover harassment of another employee. Sexual harassment in the workplace is a criminal offence. (See Harassment and sexual harassment)
  • Employment legislation provides for positive discrimination in favour of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia nationals, by giving them preferential employment rights. (See Positive action)
  • If an employee feels discriminated against on any grounds, they may be entitled to bring a civil claim for "moral" damages, as the principles of Shari'a law protect individuals' rights to equal treatment. (See Remedies and penalties)