09 June 2014

U.A.E. speaks out against forced labour

He expressed GCC countries? willingness to contribute actively in international efforts to eliminate all forms of forced labour, saying, ?We?re developing new legal tools to address gaps of the current coverage. We support the ILO?s interest in this issue, which represents one of our four strategic pillars.?

He pointed out in his speech that companies are urged not to violate workers? rights in contravention of labour laws, adding that forced labour is considered a criminal offence as per laws enacted to counter human trafficking in GCC countries and international conventions that combat forced labour.

?Statistics [in the GCC] have shown that these countries receive nearly two and a half million temporary contract labourers annually, which necessitated us to be participants in international efforts to eradicate this problem, and stop forced labour beneficiaries,? Bin Deemas said.

He added that the UAE has provided excellent protection for labourers as it gave them the ability to freely move from one employer to another, as well as the Wage Protection System, which was developed to ensure proper salary transfer.

The UAE official mentioned that the labour ministry has further developed its inspection department to carry out technical and financial inspections with great professionalism.

?GCC countries have sought to activate genuine partnerships with labour-sending countries through a variety of mechanisms, particularly signing MoUs, alongside the Abu Dhabi dialogue that aims at improving the management of relationships with those countries.