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Bahrain Set to Introduce Comprehensive Labour Accommodation Regulations

Labour law amendments will enforce stricter standards for staff housing, with designated locations for labour camps

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Staff Writer, TLR

Published on April 18, 2024, 12:40:52

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employment, labour, bahrain labour, labour law

New rules governing labour accommodations are set to be introduced, according to Bahrain’s Labour Minister Jameel Humaidan. A newly-proposed article will be added to the 2012 Private Sector Employment Law, obliging employers who provide staff accommodation to declare their whereabouts and allow inspections to ensure standards are met.

These amendments, currently under review by the Ministerial Committee for Legal Affairs, will establish accommodation standards in coordination with the Bahrain Chamber and trade unions.

Minister Humaidan also mentioned that specific locations for labour camps outside urban areas will soon be determined through a ministerial decision, in collaboration with other relevant authorities. Each worker should have a minimum of four square metres of space within one room, ensuring proper ventilation, lighting, storage and essential facilities such as fire equipment, first-aid kits and acceptable sanitary amenities.

In response to concerns raised by Parliament’s Foreign Affairs, Defence and National Security Committee vice-chairwoman Dr Mariam Al Dhaen regarding residential saturation in areas like Isa Town due to a large expatriate labour force, Minister Humaidan emphasised the need for urgent measures to address community issues caused by irresponsible labour practices.

Regarding runaway expat workers, Minister Humaidan reported that out of 562,593 work permits issued from December 2022 to February 2024, 1,337 individuals violated their employment terms.

In other news, after a decade of delays, tenders will finally be issued for the redevelopment of Jidhafs Central Market. The project will include urban enhancements, direct outlets and designated sections for fish, meat, poultry, fruits, vegetables and local products, along with essential services like a traditional coffee shop, security offices and management facilities.

This initiative follows extensive coordination among authorities, aiming to address community concerns about illegal trading, traffic congestion and related issues in the market area.

Lastly, during a parliamentary session, MPs unanimously approved an urgent proposal to establish car parks for Radhi Haddad Mosque in Janabiya, demonstrating their commitment to addressing community needs and concerns.

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