Gulf hydrocarbon exporters are planning to create a joint body to coordinate policies on the hiring of expatriate domestic workers following rifts with some Asian labour suppliers, according to a Saudi newspaper.
‘Okaz’ Arabic language daily said the six Gulf Cooperation Council (CCC) countries, a key base for Asian and African domestic workers, would shortly declare the birth of “the GCC union for domestic workers”.
“The union will work to unify job contracts and salaries for domestic workers in member states.
“The competent authorities are now putting the finishing touches on the plan,” the paper said, quoting “informed” sources in Saudi Arabia.
It said the planned union would meet soon to select a chairman and members from each GCC country, adding that the union would work to “guarantee the rights for both the employers and domestic workers in the region”.
“The sources said that the plan also includes the establishment of domestic workers office in the region and Asian countries. They said that this will organise the process of hiring workers and eliminate illegal brokerages.”
Millions of housemaids and other domestic workers are employed in the GCC which groups the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain and Oman.
Some GCC members, mainly Saudi Arabia, have reported disputes with Indonesia and other key housemaid suppliers over salaries and other job terms.