In the past year, Saudi Arabia has unleashed a wave of reforms aimed at improving the rights and access to work for women in the Kingdom, a move that has been seen as part of a shift inside the conservative country to diversify its economy and reshape its culture along more secular lines. From giving Saudi women the go ahead to start businesses without the permission of a male guardian, to rescinding the decades-old ban on female motorists, women across the country are enjoying new freedoms and opportunities.
Now, car workshops and repair centers across Saudi Arabia are looking to recruit women to take on different positions such as mechanics, receptionists, and call center staff, another milestone for the Kingdom. With the lifting of the driving ban and the subsequent addition of women drivers on the roads of Saudi Arabia, the revenue of car workshops and repair centers is expected to increase by 30 percent, according to a recent report by Saudi Gazette. This significant increase in drivers across the country will mean that there will also be an increase in opportunities for women to work in car repair shops.
Speaking to the news site, investor Fahd Al-Bugamy explained that previous to this announcement, women in Saudi Arabia were only able to work as receptionists and marketers in these sectors. He pointed to the movement of workshops from residential areas to industrial zones as a key catalyst to the increasing demand for women mechanics who can serve female clients.
Also interviewed in the article was Salem Al-Asmari, CEO of Saudi Japanese High Institute, who explained to the site that the number of women applying to work in his organization has increased in recent weeks.
“We will be in need of women mechanics in the near future. We already need as much manpower as we can get to serve the increasing number of customers. We are currently studying the possibility of hiring women mechanics who are qualified for the job,” explained Al-Asmari.