The Ministry of Interior (MOI) and the Ministry of Administrative Development, Labour and Social Affairs jointly held a press conference at the Civil Defence Club on proposed changes in some laws regulating expatriate workers and the labour market.

According to Director General of Passports, Major General Mohammad Ahmed Al Ateeq, three proposals will be implemented soon – including permission for sons of expatriate residents to work without changing their sponsorship, issuance of temporary work visas which could last up to six months, and a 20% reduction in fees for online transactions.

As per the current system, only daughters are allowed to work without changing their sponsorship. As per the new proposal, all members of the family will be allowed to work without having to change their family sponsorship. The new proposal will bring positive results in the labour market, according to the Ministry, and benefit Qatari citizens and residents alike, as it will take advantage of ‘untapped’ workforce.

The new proposal will also reduce recruitment of marginal labour surplus required by the market, reduce the costs of recruitment and housing expenses for employers, and reduce issues with cultural adjustments because of their familiarity with the customs and traditions of the Qatari society.

In order to simplify MOI services and encourage the public to take advantage of electronic services, a proposal to reduce fees for electronic transactions was also considered and a 20% reduction on all online transactions will be implemented.

Lieutenant Colonel Ahmed Abdullah Al Harami, Assistant Director of Legal Affairs, asserted that the proposals that have been studied need amendments in related legislative tools governing these categories. He said that work is underway to prepare and amend the legislations for submission to the General Secretariat of the Council of Ministers, to complete the legislative procedures.

The Director General of Passports also announced the proposal for a new temporary work visa system to cover some professions and jobs in order to accommodate the need of the labour market and create a suitable environment for domestic and foreign investment. These visas will be granted to private companies, commercial establishments and other licenced entities in the country for emergency, temporary or seasonal work that requires the workforce only for a specific period, season or occasion.

As per the proposal, these visas will be issued after approval by the Ministry of Administrative Development, Labour and Social Affairs. All required procedures will be carried out through Qatar Visa Centres abroad or as soon they arrive in the country. Temporary work visas valid for one month will be cost QAR300, and QAR500 for two months. Visas valid for three to six months will be charged at QAR200 per month.

Source: Gulf Times