Expatriate Workforce, Qatarisation Discussed At Shura Counci...| MENAFN.COM

Saturday, 01 April 2023 01:43 GMT

Expatriate Workforce, Qatarisation Discussed At Shura Council Session

(MENAFN- Gulf Times) The Shura Council held its regular weekly meeting yesterday at Tamim bin Hamad Hall under the chairmanship of HE the Speaker of the Shura Council Hassan bin Abdullah al-Ghanem.
In the presence of HE the Minister of Labour Dr Ali bin Saeed bin Smaikh al-Marri, the Shura Council discussed the Ministry of Labour (MoL)'s efforts in terms of the Qatarisation of jobs in the private sector, qualifying the national workforce, attracting and classifying expatriate workers, regulating labour recruitment offices and the progress made in developing the ministry's electronic services and digital transformation towards simplifying and facilitating procedures for citizens and companies.
HE the Speaker and the Shura Council members welcomed HE the Minister of Labour, praising the efforts made by the MoL to improve its services with the aim of developing the labour market, qualifying national cadres, and realising the partnership between the public and private sectors.
In his presentation to the members of the Shura Council, HE Dr al-Marri said that the ministry is working on an“axis” to attract and classify expatriate workers, which will contribute to increasing productivity in the work environment, through vital initiatives that will provide classification methods for workers, the extent of their skills, and the need of the local market for them.
He explained that organising the expatriate workforce in the local market will have a fundamental role in benefiting from the existing labour skills, in addition to increasing the rate of attracting skilled workers.
The minister stressed that these measures will work to reduce the percentage of non-skilled workers and replace them with skilled workers that benefit employers and increase the productive capacity of the private sector.
HE Dr al-Marri revealed that the ministry is working on the implementation of seven initiatives to attract and classify expatriate workers, including the launch of the Qatari guide for classifying occupations, the labour rotation programme, a programme pertaining to“talent visas”, and the provision of different types of work permits based on workers' skill levels.
Meanwhile, the minister confirmed that hiring Qataris in the private sector during the past year increased by about five-fold to reach 1,850 employees, while the number of establishments that co-operated with the Qatarisation programme reached 331 in various sectors.
He said that the Ministry of Labour is implementing six initiatives within the Qatarisation programme in the private sector, and noted that these initiatives take into account various aspects of job creation, holding training programmes for citizens and strengthening communication with private sector establishments to achieve the desired goals.
HE Dr al-Marri pointed out that the draft law on the Qatarisation of jobs in the private sector, which was approved in principle by the cabinet in February, addresses many of the challenges facing the Ministry of Labour in increasing the rate of hiring Qataris in the sector.
He explained that the draft law gives the MoL more flexibility in the field of attracting and motivating Qataris, and hiring them in the private sector, and also created legal frameworks to encourage companies to hire citizens.
HE Dr al-Marri also explained that the draft law grants the Minister of Labour regulatory powers to implement the law by setting conditions, incentives, facilities and privileges, setting conditions and controls for training Qatari students, and approving scholarship policies in co-ordination with the Ministry of Education and Higher Education.
He stressed that a set of penalties will be imposed on violating establishments under the new draft law.
The ministry has the right to issue warnings as well as sanction and fine violating companies.
He added that the work environment requires offering some incentives, facilities and privileges to attract Qataris to the private sector.
HE Dr al-Marri also said the ministry is in the process of establishing a national centre for accreditation and testing of professions and skills for expatriate workers.
On another issue, the minister said the main priorities of the MoL include the development of policies and procedures of labour recruitment offices, by finding solutions to the most important challenges facing the ministry's teams in implementing the development and modernisation policy for the recruitment offices sector.
HE Dr al-Marri said that the MoL has implemented a series of measures to improve the work environment and preserve the rights of employers, indicating that it was decided to extend the probation period for domestic workers from three to nine months, and set the maximum cost for the recruitment of domestic workers to prevent exaggeration in prices, while also studying the application of insurance for domestic workers.
He noted that the ministry carried out inspection campaigns at recruitment offices and places that might employ runaway workers, informing that the licences of 54 recruitment offices were revoked as part of its ongoing inspection campaigns to ensure the application of the law and ministerial decisions.
Regarding the digital transformation programme, HE the Minister of Labour explained that the programme constituted a qualitative leap in the speed of development, and launch and delivery of high-quality services to the public.
It mainly contributed to reducing the time for completing transactions, in addition to establishing an effective information link with some government agencies related to the work of the ministry.
He confirmed that the number of services that have been offered since the launch of the Digital Transformation Unit last May amounted to about 30 electronic services, highlighting the ministry's preparedness during the coming period to launch a package of new services of interest to a large segment of the public.
The Shura Council members appreciated the role of the Ministry of Labour, stressing their keenness to support the MoL in its efforts to improve the reality of the labour market.
They focused on the role of the private sector in absorbing national cadres, and the need to reorganise recruitment offices, in a way that guarantees the rights of all parties, noting the developments in laws and legislation related to this aspect.
They also highlighted the role of the private sector in supporting national efforts in terms of development, and the role of partnerships between the public and private sectors in absorbing national competencies and cadres, and qualifying them for the labour market.
The members drew attention to complaints related to some of these offices violating the requirements and laws of the MoL, highlighting the importance of intensifying efforts to monitor and audit them.
Further, they demanded that private sector companies, particularly large and semi-governmental companies, attract retired citizens to fill job vacancies and hire people with disabilities in the private sector, in light of their functional skills and capabilities.
They called on the MoL to strengthen its efforts to set regulatory controls and regulations, and take the necessary measures to curb the phenomenon of runaway labourers because of the material, social and cultural damage it causes to society.
Members of the Shura Council also touched on the developments taking place in the country regarding the digitisation of services provided to the public, pointing out that the MoL is one of the bodies to which the interests of a large segment of citizens and residents are linked.
They stressed the need to take the necessary measures to enhance the ministry's services, provide them electronically, reduce the necessary steps to complete them, and exempt users from having to visit the ministry's offices to complete them, by taking advantage of the country's advanced digital infrastructure.


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