Employees will have the right to switch jobs without getting a No-Objection Certificate (NOC) from their employers if the company fails to pay their monthly salaries within seven days of the due date, an official from the Ministry of Administrative Development, Labour and Social Affairs (MADLSA) has said.
A decision to this effect has been taken at the ministerial level and it will be implemented soon, the official said.
"The government wants all companies operating in the country to pay monthly salaries to their employees on time or in certain cases within seven days from the due date. If they fail to do so, employees of such companies will have the right to change jobs even if they have not completed the contract period," the official said.
Despite implementation of the Wage Protection System (WPS) almost a year ago, the official said, some companies are yet to adopt it.
"The government is taking action to identify companies that are yet to implement WPS. Such companies will be blacklisted and lose the support of the government," the official said.
A new committee is being formed to settle labour disputes within three weeks."Earlier, labour disputes were settled in the court. Now, such disputes will be resolved within three weeks by the committee comprising members from MADLSA, Ministry of Interior, National Human Rights Commission and a judge of the court," he said.
Any worker can approach the committee with complaints against the employer.
"If the grievances of an employee against the company is found to be true then the employee will be given a chance to change job even without completing the contract period. On the other hand, the company will lose its position in the government's classification list," the official said.
If the employee is found to be guilty, the official said, the committee will allow the company to terminate the job of the employee.
"Such terminated persons will not be allowed to enter the country for four years from the date of termination. The four-year ban can be extended depending on the seriousness of the misdeed of the worker," he said.
The official said that a Swiss company hired by the ministry to smoothen the procedure of recruitment of expatriate workers will start functioning soon.
The Swiss company will soon start opening its branches in 39 countries which have agreed to send workers to Qatar to complete employment formalities like medical checkup, document and certificate verification, and signing of work contract in the source country itself.
Any company operating in Qatar will have to hire the services of the Swiss firm to complete the employment prerequisites in the source country.
Fees for acailing the services of the Swiss company will be paid by the employer and not the employee, the official said, adding that fees for services are yet to be fixed.