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Six-month ban on job-switch remains, but with conditions

Workers need to meet certain conditions specified by the ministry to qualify for ban-free job changes. (FILE)

By Staff

Labour Ministry has clarified the amendments it made to labour laws early this week and said the six-month ban on job transfers remains, but with certain conditions, reported  Arabic language daily Al Khaleej.

Humaid bin Dimas Al Suwaidi, Assistant Undersecretary for Labour Affairs, said: "While the amendments in labour laws aim to improve employer-employee relationship and make it easier for people to switch jobs, if the agreements between the two parties are not adhered to or employees breach any of the labour laws, such as not spending a minimum two years with an employer, then they can face a six-month ban."

"There will be no ban if employees transfer to another facility of the same employer or to those companies in which the employer has a share in or is a partner" he said.

Employees will not be banned on taking up another job if the facility is shutting down or they are not paid salaries for more than 60 days. But in such cases the employee must alert the Labour Ministry and submit a report from the Inspection Department within two months, Al Suwaidi added.

Alternatively, employees can also approach the Labour Ministry in cases of unfair dismissal from work without justification; termination before the contract period ends; denial of contract renewal without a valid reason; etc.
However, employees should be clear of any breach of practice.

Al Suwaidi said, as per the new amendments, all categories of workers have the right to transfer jobs, but did not specify the number of times a worker can transfer employment.

"The system of transferring sponsorship, which has been valid for more than 30 years, is abolished," he said and called on employers to speeden up renewal of labour contracts.

Meanwhile, according to a source in the ministry, establishments that fall under Category 1 is exempted from providing a bank guarantee.