Tuesday, September 02, 2008

When it's still better to be a man

My company has recently been doing work with Sabic, a Saudi Arabian company. I've worked at places that have done business with the Saudis in the past, but this experience takes the cake.

For one, Sabic doesn't hire women. At all. For anything. At least with previous clients there was a female secretary here and there.

Next, if you are a married women entering Saudi Arabia on business without your husband, you must present customs with a letter from your husband giving his permission for you to do so. Furthermore, upon departing the country, you must present customs with another letter deeming your return home acceptable.

What do they do with the women who have the first letter but not the second?

I consider myself extremely lucky to have been born in the West.