Data Dashboards

Kuwait
Measurement
Measuring the Change

using prevalence data providing the widest temporal coverage of the most complete and comparable measures available by ICLS standards.

Due to lack of nationally representative data, there is no change to report.

%
Best Target 8.7 Data: Child Labour Rate

No data available

Data Availability
  • Child labour: No ILO/UNICEF data
  • Forced labour: No nationally representative data
  • Human trafficking: No nationally representative data
Context
Human Development

Human Development Index Score: 0.808 (2018)

Mean School Years: 7.3 years (2018)

 

Labour Indicators

Vulnerable Employment: 1.1% (2018)

Working Poverty Rate: 0.1% (2020)

Government Efforts
Key Ratifications
  • ILO Protocol of 2014 to the Forced Labour Convention, P029: Not Ratified
  • ILO Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention, C182: Ratified 2000
  • UN Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children (Palermo Protocol): Accession 2006
National Strategies

No national strategies

Social Protection Coverage

General (at least one): No data

Unemployed: No data

Pension: 22.0% (2000)

Vulnerable: No data

Children: No data

Disabled: No data

Poor: No data

Measurement of child labour prevalence has evolved considerably over the past two decades. Estimates of child labour incidence are more robust and exist for more countries than any other form of exploitation falling under SDG Target 8.7.

No nationally representative data is available on child labour prevalence in Kuwait.

Visit the How to Measure the Change page for information on ILO-SIMPOC methods and guidelines for defining, measuring and collecting data on child labour.

Measuring the incidence of forced labour is a much more recent endeavour and presents unique methodological challenges compared to the measurement of child labour.

No nationally representative data is available on forced labour prevalence in Kuwait.

Visit the How to Measure the Change page for information on new guidelines presented by the International Labour Organization and adopted by the International Conference of Labour Statisticians.

The challenges in estimating human trafficking are similar to those of estimating forced labour, though recent innovations in estimation have begun to produce prevalence estimates in developed countries.

No nationally representative data is available on human trafficking prevalence in Kuwait.

Visit the How to Measure the Change page to learn about measuring human trafficking prevalence, including information on collecting data through national referral mechanisms and producing prevalence statistics using Multiple Systems Estimation (MSE).

Case Data: International and Non-Governmental Organizations

Civil society organizations (CSOs) focused on human trafficking victim assistance can serve as crucial sources of data given their ability to reach a population that is notoriously difficult to sample.

Counter Trafficking Data Collaborative (CTDC): The International Organization for Migration (IOM), Polaris and Liberty Asia have launched a global data repository on human trafficking, with data contributed by counter-trafficking partner organizations around the world. Not only does the CTDC serve as a central repository for this critical information, it also publishes normed and harmonized data from various organizations using a unified schema. This global dataset facilitates an unparalleled level of cross-border, trans-agency analysis and provides the counter-trafficking movement with a deeper understanding of this complex issue. Equipped with this information, decision makers will be empowered to create more targeted and effective intervention strategies.

Prosecution Data

UNODC compiles a global dataset on detected and prosecuted traffickers, which serves as the basis in their Global Report for country profiles. This information is beginning to paint a picture of trends over time, and case-specific information can assist investigators and prosecutors.

Key aspects of human development, such as poverty and lack of education, are found to be associated with risk of exploitation. Policies that address these issues may indirectly contribute to getting us closer to achieving Target 8.7.

Human Development Index (Source: UNDP)

The Human Development Index (HDI) is a summary measure of achievements in three key dimensions of human development: (1) a long and healthy life; (2) access to knowledge; and (3) a decent standard of living. Human development can factor into issues of severe labour exploitation in multiple ways.

The chart displays information on human development in Kuwait between 1990 and 2018. Only certain sample years have data disaggregated by sex. 

The most recent year of the HDI, 2018, shows that the average human development score in Kuwait is 0.808. This score indicates that human development is very high. 

 

HDI Education Index (Source: UNDP)

Lack of education and illiteracy are key factors that make both children and adults more vulnerable to exploitive labour conditions.

As the seminal ILO report Profits and Poverty explains:

“Adults with low education levels and children whose parents are not educated are at higher risk of forced labour. Low education levels and illiteracy reduce employment options for workers and often force them to accept work under poor conditions. Furthermore, individuals who can read contracts may be in a better position to recognize situations that could lead to exploitation and coercion.”

The bars on the chart represent the Education Index score and the line traces the mean years of education in Kuwait over time.

 

Decent work, a major component of SDG 8 overall, has clear implications on the forms of exploitation within Target 8.7. Identifying shortcomings in the availability of equitable, safe and stable employment can be a step in the right direction towards achieving Target 8.7.

HDI Vulnerable Employment (Source: UNDP)

There are reasons to believe that certain types of labour and labour arrangements are more likely to lead to labour exploitation. According to the ILO:

“Own-account workers and contributing family workers have a lower likelihood of having formal work arrangements, and are therefore more likely to lack elements associated with decent employment, such as adequate social security and a voice at work. The two statuses are summed to create a classification of ‘vulnerable employment’, while wage and salaried workers together with employers constitute ‘non-vulnerable employment’.”

Between 1991 and 2018, Kuwait showed a decrease in the proportion of workers in vulnerable employment as compared to those in secure employment.

Working Poverty Rate (Source: ILO)

Labour income tells us about a household’s vulnerability. As the ILO explains in Profits and Poverty

“Poor households find it particularly difficult to deal with income shocks, especially when they push households below the food poverty line. In the presence of such shocks, men and women without social protection nets tend to borrow to smooth consumption, and to accept any job for themselves or their children, even under exploitative conditions.”

ILO indicators that measure poverty with respect to the labour force include working poverty rate, disaggregated by sex, with temporal coverage spanning from 2000 to 2020. The chart displays linear trends in working poverty rate over time for all individuals over 15 years of age.

Labour Productivity (Source: ILO)

Labour productivity is an important economic indicator that is closely linked to economic growth, competitiveness, and living standards within an economy.” However, when increased labour output does not produce rising wages, this can point to increasing inequality. As indicated by a recent ILO report (2015), there is a “growing disconnect between wages and productivity growth, in both developed and emerging economies”. The lack of decent work available increases vulnerability to situations of labour exploitation. 

Labour productivity represents the total volume of output (measured in terms of Gross Domestic Product, GDP) produced per unit of labour (measured in terms of the number of employed persons) during a given period.

Research to date suggests that a major factor in vulnerability to labour exploitation is broader social vulnerability, marginalization or exclusion.

Groups Highly Vulnerable to Exploitation (Source: UNHCR)

Creating effective policy to prevent and protect individuals from forced labour, modern slavery, human trafficking and child labour means making sure that all parts of the population are covered, particularly the most vulnerable groups, including migrants.

According to the 2016 Global Estimates of Modern Slavery: “Almost one of every four victims of forced labour were exploited outside their country of residence, which points to the high degree of risk associated with migration in the modern world, particularly for migrant women and children. “

As IOM explains: “Although most migration is voluntary and has a largely positive impact on individuals and societies, migration, particularly irregular migration, can increase vulnerability to human trafficking and exploitation.” UNODC similarly notes that: “The vulnerability to being trafficked is greater among refugees and migrants in large movements, as recognized by Member States in the New York declaration for refugees and migrants of September 2016.”

The chart displays UNHCR’s estimates of persons of concern in Kuwait.

Achieving SDG Target 8.7 will require national governments to take direct action against the forms of exploitation through policy implementation.

Official Definitions
Forced Labour

Constitution of Kuwait, 1962

“Article 42 [No Forced Labor]
There is no forced labor except in the cases specified by law for national emergency and with just remuneration.”

Ministerial Order No. 201/A of 2011 Prohibiting Forced Labour

“””Section 1: Subject to provisions of Law No.6 of 2010 concerning working in the private sector:

a) Employers in the private sector are prohibited to use any mean making workers executing forced labour, or forcing workers to carry out tasks outside their assigned job.
b) Subject to the previous paragraph, employers are prohibited to employ workers without pay.
c) Employers are permitted, within the limits of the law and and the Ministerial Order No. 188 of 2010, to require workers to work overtime.”””

Child Labour

Law 6/2010 concerning Labour in the Private Sector, 2010

“Section III Employment of Juveniles
Article 19
Employment of those who did not attain 15 years of age shall be banned.
Article 20
Juvenile employment who are between the age of 15 and 18 years may be made by the permission of the Ministry under the following conditions:

a. to be employed in such works and trades other than those hazardous & harmful to health, in respect of which a decision shall be issued by the Minister
b. to be medically checked up, before the employment, and thereafter periodically for not more than six months. The Minister shall issue a decision determinign these works and trades in addition to the professions, procedures and dates organizing the periodic medical examination. “

“Article 27
Every person who attains 15 years of age shall be entitled to signa work contract for an unlimited period. In teh case of limited period contract, this period shall not exceed one year until he attains the age of 18 years old.”

Law 21 on Children Rights, 2015

“Title V: Working Child & Working Mother.”

Worst Forms of Child Labour

Law 6/2010 concerning Labour in the Private Sector, 2010

“Section III Employment of Juveniles
Article 20
Juvenile employment who are between the age of 15 and 18 years may be made by the permission of the Ministry under the following conditions:

a. to be employed in such works and trades other than those hazardous & harmful to health, in respect of which a decision shall be issued by the Minister
b. to be medically checked up, before the employment, and thereafter periodically for not more than six months. The Minister shall issue a decision determinign these works and trades in addition to the professions, procedures and dates organizing the periodic medical examination.

Article 21
The juveniles maximum working hours shall be 6 (six) hours per day, on condition that htey shall not be made to work for more htan 4 hours continuously, which shall be followed by at least one hour rest break. Juveniles shall not have to work additional working hours or during weekly off days, holidays or between 7pm to 6 am”

Ministerial Decision No. 196/a of 2010 concerning the Youth Employment

“Section 5 of this Order contains the list of jobs prohibited to young persons under 18 years of age.”

Constitution of Kuwait, 1962

“Article 10 [Youth Protection]
The State cares for the young and protects them from exploitation and from moral, physical, and spiritual neglect.”

Human Trafficking

Law 91 Combating Trafficking in Persons and Smuggling of Migrants, 2013

In Art. 1 the terms “cross-national crime”, “organized crime group”, “child”, “trafficking in persons”, “smuggling of migrants”, “illegal entry”, and “forged passport or travel document” are defined.

Governments can take action to assist victims and to prevent and end the perpetration of forced labour, modern slavery, human trafficking and child labour. These actions should be considered in wider societal efforts to reduce prevalence and move towards eradication of these forms of exploitation.

Programs and Agencies for Victim Support

Policies for Assistance
Policies for Assistance, General

Law 6/2010 concerning Labour in the Private Sector, 2010

“Article 10
The employer is banned to employ foreign labour force unless they are duly authorized by the Competent Authority to work for him. The Minister shall issue a decision on the rules, documents and fees to be charged from the employer. In case of refusal, the refusal decision shall be reasonable.
Furthermore, the refusal decision shall no tb erelevant to hte capital amount, otherwise the decision shall be entirely null as if it is not issued. An employer shall not recruit labourers from outside the country or appoint labourers from inside the country without making them to work for him. If it is evident that he is not actually in need of those labourers, in this case, the employer shall bear the expenses for returning the labourer to his country. If the worker abandons his work and worked for another employer, hte employer shall be obliged to return the employer back to his home country, upon registering an absconding notice against the worker by his main sponsor. ”

Ministerial Decree No. 305/2006 on the work chart of the Committee that regulates the situation of migrant workers in the private sector dealing with problems related to domestic workers.

“The Decree establishes a Committee to regulate the situation of domestic workers in the private sector. It defines the role of Committee members and their positions, and sets the duties and obligations of the Committee in regulating the work.”

Policies for Assistance, Child Labour

Ministerial Resolution No. 205 of 2004 promulgating the creation of the National Association for Child Protection

“Issued by the Minister of Social Affairs and Labour, promulgates the establishment of the National Association for Child Protection. The purpose of creating the Association is to combat violence against children and protect them from economic exploitations and hazardous activities. it also points out that association protects children from child trafficking. Moreover, the resolution aims at raising the awareness of children rights. It provides adequate protection to children by maintaining them in a decent environment to enhance their mental and moral upbringing.”

Law 21 on Children Rights, 2015

“Title III: Children Social Welfare.”

Policies for assistance, Human Trafficking

Decision No. 617/1992 (Protection from Trafficking)

“To ensure the protection of workers, Decision No. 617/1992 was established to put safeguards in place to protect workers from exploitation and trafficking. These conditions include the following: the licenced applicant must not be a civil servant in any of the State’s public institutions or authorities; the licenced applicant is required to obtain a surety bond in the amount of KD 20,000 (equivalent to US$ 69,252.08) and in favour of the Ministry of the Interior, which remains valid throughout the duration of his business activities and for one year thereafter; the licence is not transferable or assignable to a third party wishing to run the business and expires on the death of the licensee.”

 

Penalties
Penalties, General

Law 6/2010 concerning Labour in the Private Sector, 2010

“Article 138
Without prejudice to by any harder penalty provided for in any other law, whoever violates the provision of paragraph 3 of Article 10 of this law shall be punished by imprisonment for not more than three years and a fine not more than KD 1,000/- or with both penalties.”

Penal Code, 1960

“Art. 185 stipulates that anyone bringing in or taking out of Kuwait any individual with the intention of enslaving him/ her, buys, sells or gifts another person as a slave may be punished with imprisonment for a period of time not exceeding five years and a fine not exceeding 375 Kuwaiti Dinars or either of those two penalties.”

Amiri Decree 17/1959 (Punitive actions against trafficking)

“Article 24 bis of Amiri Decree No. 17/59 concerning the Aliens’ Residence Act to prevent trafficking in persons states that “any person who facilitates an alien’s acquisition of a permit to visit or reside in the country and who obtains money or benefit in return or accepts a promise of either shall be punishable by a term of imprisonment of up to 3 months and a fine of up to 3,000 dinars, or either penalty.””

Penalties, Forced Labour

Ministerial Order No. 201/A of 2011 Prohibiting Forced Labour.

“Section 2: Subject to Section 141 of the Law No. 6/2010 or to any greater penalty stipulated by another Law, the Ministry may stop the employer’s file permanently or temporarily if he/she violates the provisions of this Order.”

Penalties, Child Labour

Law 6/2010 concerning Labour in the Private Sector, 2010

“Article 141
Without prejudice to any harder penalty provided for in any other law, whoever violates the remaining provisions of this law and the executive resolutions thereto shall be punished as follows:

a. The party in breach shall be given a notice to rectify the contravention within the period specified by the Ministry provided tha tit shall not be more than three months
b. If the contravention is not rectified or remedied within the prescribed period, the violating party shall be punsihed by a penalty of not less than KD 100/- and not more than KD 200/- per every labourer against whom the penalty is committed. In the event of repetitions, within three years from the date of the final judgment, the penalty should be doubled. “

Law 21 on Children Rights

“Title VIII: Criminal Offences Relating to Child Protection”

Penalties, Human Trafficking

Law 91 Combating Trafficking in Persons and Smuggling of Migrants, 2013

“””Art. 2 states that anyone who has committed the crime of trafficking in persons shall be sentenced to 15 years in prison and to lifetime imprisonment if the crime was carried out in any of the following circumstances:

1. If the crime was committed by an organized crime group and the defendant has contributed to the establishment, organization or running the group or joined it willingly
2. If the crime had a non-national element.
3. If the defendant is married to the victim, related to the victim or has any authority over the victim.
4. If the crime was committed by two or more people or by a person carrying a weapon.
5. If the victim was significantly harmed or permanently disabled.
6. If the defendant holds a public position in the country or any of the countries where the crime was committed or planned and if that position played any role in facilitating the commission or the execution of the crime.
7. If the victim is a child, a woman or a person with special needs. The defendant shall be sentenced to the death if the victim is killed as a result of the crime.

Art. 2 states that anyone who has committed the crime of trafficking in persons shall be sentenced to 15 years in prison and to lifetime imprisonment if the crime was carried out in any of the following circumstances:

1. If the crime was committed by an organized crime group and the defendant has contributed to the establishment, organization or running the group or joined it willingly
2. If the crime had a non-national element.
3. If the defendant is married to the victim, related to the victim or has any authority over the victim.
4. If the crime was committed by two or more people or by a person carrying a weapon.
5. If the victim was significantly harmed or permanently disabled.
6. If the defendant holds a public position in the country or any of the countries where the crime was committed or planned and if that position played any role in facilitating the commission or the execution of the crime.
7. If the victim is a child, a woman or a person with special needs. The defendant shall be sentenced to the death if the victim is killed as a result of the crime.”””

“Art. 4 sets the penalty for hiding a person who has committed the crimes mentioned in articles 2 & 3 and for participating in the concealment of the crime.”

“Art. 7 defines the penalty for having knowledge of plans to commit any of the crimes set out in articles 2 & 3 and failing to report it to the authorities.”

Data Commitments

A Call to Action to End Forced Labour, Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking, Not signed

1.ii. Take steps to measure, monitor and share data on prevalence and response to all such forms of exploitation, as appropriate to national circumstances;

Programs and Agencies for Enforcement

Measures to address the drivers of vulnerability to exploitation can be key to effective prevention. A broad range of social protections are thought to reduce the likelihood that an individual will be at risk of exploitation, especially when coverage of those protections extends to the most vulnerable groups.

The seminal ILO paper on the economics of forced labour, Profits and Poverty, explains the hypothesis that social protection can mitigate the risks that arise when a household is vulnerable to sudden income shocks, helping to prevent labour exploitation. It also suggests that access to education and skills training can enhance the bargaining power of workers and prevent children in particular from becoming victims of forced labour. Measures to promote social inclusion and address discrimination against women and girls may also go a long way towards preventing forced labour.

The ILO measures social protections coverage through the Social Security Inquiry (SSI). Every two years, national governments, including responsible ministries, provide data to the SSI on social protections including coverage and expenditure.

There are no visualizations, as there is not a sufficient amount of data provided on social protections for the Arab States region.

Delta 8.7 has received no Official Response to this dashboard from Kuwait. If you are a representative of Kuwait and wish to submit an Official Response, please contact us here.