Proposed Bill Aims to Redirect Business Support in Bahrain

The Council of Representatives will deliberate on Tuesday on a crucial bill aimed at reshaping the landscape of business support in the country.

The proposed legislation, if passed, would fundamentally alter the criteria for receiving assistance from the Labour Fund, Tamkeen.

The bill’s core objective is clear: to redirect Tamkeen’s aid exclusively towards Bahraini-owned companies or those with Bahraini citizens as stakeholders, effectively sidelining foreign-owned enterprises from accessing financial support.

This move signals a strategic shift towards bolstering the local economy and fostering greater involvement of Bahraini nationals in the business sector.

Programs Under the current framework, foreign-owned companies enjoy the opportunity to tap into Tamkeen’s array of programs, leveraging them to bolster their operations and fuel expansion initiatives.

However, the proposed bill seeks to restrict such privileges, reserving financial assistance solely for enterprises where Bahraini ownership or significant shareholding prevails.

The legislation has navigated a rigorous evaluation process, earning approval from both the Legislative and Legal Affairs Committee and the Financial and Economic Affairs Committee.

Yet, despite this initial backing, the government has raised notable reservations and has requested a second review. Government authorities argue that the bill may be redundant, asserting that existing laws adequately address the bill’s purported objectives.

Moreover, they contend that the proposed changes could undermine Tamkeen’s broader mandate, particularly its role in nurturing the private sector as a cornerstone of Bahrain’s economic framework.

Concerns Additionally, concerns have been voiced regarding potential repercussions on foreign investment and overall economic stimulation.

The government underscores the significant contributions made by foreign-owned enterprises to Tamkeen through financial settlements, suggesting that depriving them of access to Tamkeen’s resources may not align with principles of fairness.

As discussions unfold, the government’s stance underscores the complexity of balancing local economic empowerment with broader economic imperatives and the need for a comprehensive evaluation of proposed changes to Tamkeen’s support mechanisms.


News of Bahrain

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