Qatar Emir HH Sheikh al-Thani issues Law no 21 of 2017 of expatriates

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"HH the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani issued Law No 1 of 2017 on Wednesday, 4 January, 2017, amending some provisions of the Law No 21 of 2015 regulating the entry, exit, and residence of expatriates."

The law would be effective on the day following the date of its publication in the official gazette, according to the Qatar News Agency.

As per the amendment, an expatriate worker shall have the right to exit the country for vacation, emergencies, or any other purpose after informing the recruiter, according to the employment contract. 

Expatriates would also have the right to leave the country permanently before the expiry of the employment contract after informing the recruiter.

The worker would also have the right to petition the exit permit grievances committee, in case of any objection on the exit, which shall be formed and regulated by a decision of His Excellency the Minister.

Comprising representatives of the National Human Rights Committee (NHRC) and the ministries of Labour and Interior, the Exit Permit Grievances Committee was formed on December 12 and has been set up in accordance with Law No 21 of 2015 that abolished the Kafala system and replaced it with a modernised, contract-based employment system.

Brigadier Salim Saqar al-Muraikhi, head of MoI’s legal affairs department, stated that the panel would be able to reach a decision on granting travel permits to expatriates within three days after a request is submitted.

 

He added that the employer is duty-bound to sanction any leave due to the employee which is mentioned in the contract executed between them. 

Besides, the employer is also liable to grant leave to his employee in the event of emergencies, pointed out Brigadier al-Murakhi.

He further added that the employee only needs to submit an application to his employer, to avail an exit permit. 

The Ministry of Administrative Development, Labour & Social Affairs (MADLSA) also had statement earlier that the worker would have the opportunity to contest before the committee any evidence that might have been used against him.

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