His Highness the Emir issued today the Law No. 13 of 2018, amending certain provisions of the Law No. 21 of 2015 regulating the entry, exit and residency of expatriates. International Labour Organisation (ILO) welcomed this move and quoted it as ‘a significant step in upholding the fundamental rights of migrant workers in Qatar’.

Qatar News Agency (QNA) tweeted the below via their official handle.

Excerpt from ILO official website: “Law No. 13 of 2018, amends provisions of Law No. 21 of 2015  and Law No. 1 of 2017, which regulate the entry and exit of expatriates. Under the previous legal framework, all migrant workers were required to obtain an exit permit from their employer in order to leave Qatar. With this new law, migrant workers covered by the Labour Code will be able to leave Qatar without having to obtain such a permit.”


The Gulf Times reports:

An employer may submit a prior and reasoned application to the Ministry of Administrative Development, Labour and Social Affairs (MADLSA) with the names of the employees that he deems necessary to obtain his pre-approval before leaving the country due to the nature of work of that employee.

The percentage of such workers shall not exceed 5% of the total number of employees. In case the MADLSA approves the application, the entities concerned shall be notified. As for expatriate workers who do not fall under Labour Law No 14 for 2004, a decision issued by HE the Minister of Interior shall specify the procedures and standards for exiting the country.

The new law also stipulates that an expatriate worker, who is not allowed to exit the country for any reason, can approach the Expatriate Exit Grievances Committee. For this, HE the Minister of Interior shall issue a decision regarding its formation, jurisdiction, procedures and work mechanism. The committee shall decide on grievances within three working days.  The new law is effective starting from the day following its publication in the official gazette.

Below is the official document explaining the new law: