Several Qatari public institutions have pledged their support for fair recruitment of migrant workers in lieu of an initiative by the Qatari Ministry of Administrative Development, Labor, and Social Affairs (ADLSA). The pledges were made at a conference titled “Joining Forces to Ensure Workers do not Pay Recruitment Fees and Related Costs,” held on May 20, 2019. The conference was organized by the ADLSA in cooperation with the Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Qatar Foundation, the International Labor Organization Project Office, and the U.S. Embassy in Qatar.
“Ensuring that the payment of recruitment fees by employers is included and evaluated during contract bidding will give a clear signal to all contractors that recruitment fees and related costs should be borne by them. It will also create a level playing field for all companies.”
– Houtan Homayounpour, Head of the International Labour Organization (ILO) Project Office for the State of Qatar
The pledges commit to the principle, enshrined in Qatar’s labor laws, that workers should not have to pay to be recruited for a job. Signatories commit to ensuring that contractors themselves pay the recruitment fees and related costs for workers.
“The issue of fair recruitment is at the heart of our country’s labour reform agenda. I would like to commend the public institutions that have already signed the pledges on fair recruitment and recognize the contribution this will make to ensuring all workers arrive in Qatar debt free.”
– His Excellency Yousuf Mohamed Al Othman Fakhroo, Minister of Administrative Development Labour and Social Affairs
Signatories to the pledge include: the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy, Qatar Rail, Manateq, Qatar Museums, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Middle East District. The pledge is still available for institutions and organizations to sign until the end of May.
In July 2019, ADLSA will facilitate a quarterly working group meeting of public sector stakeholders to develop policies and tools to address the issue of fees and deception during workers’ recruitment.