Home Asia UAE Liberalizes Labour Laws Aiming at Attracting Better Talents

UAE Liberalizes Labour Laws Aiming at Attracting Better Talents

The United Arab Emirates, which celebrates its 50th year of its formation this year, has liberalized its labour laws. The move is likely to boost the Gulf country’s economic competitiveness and attract top talents. The new changes to the labour laws will be implemented from 2 February 2022.

In an attempt to offer a better life, the laws allow workers to avail different kinds of leave. The new body of amendment defines the official holidays and how workers would be compensated during those holidays. The amendment covers laws affecting annual leaves. Details have been laid out on maternity and sick leaves. 

Notable among these changes are the “other leaves” section, under which labourers can take paternity leave, bereavement leave, study and sabbatical leave.  

Now after childbirth, new mothers and fathers can avail five days leave in the first six months after a child is born. Likewise, the law allows three to five days off if someone in the applicant’s family has passed away.

Employees can get other leave as specified by the UAE cabinet.

If someone is enrolled in any UAE’s educational institutions, that employee can avail 10 days off per year for study leave, to prepare for examinations. Study leave can however be availed by only those who have spent two years with their current employer.  

Emirati workers are allowed sabbatical leaves for national or reserve services. 

For availing all the mentioned leaves, employees will have to share their proof with their employers.

Another set of labour laws have been reformed, which has eased change of jobs for employees.

The laws prevents employers from forcing employees to leave the country after the work contract is over. Now, a worker can move to his next employer after the previous contract has lapsed. Every year hundreds of contractual workers from South Asia, South East Asia, Africa, Europe, enter the Gulf country after being hired by employers. The hirers have to spend substantial amounts on hiring people from abroad. 

Instead of indefinite period of work contracts, now the workers will be hired for a fixed term. The contracts can be renewed following a mutual understanding by both the parties.

On probation period, the law allows the period only up to six months. Employers will have to give 14-day notice to an employee before removing him or her from the job. 

With changes to labour laws in accordance with best international practices, the labourers will be much more stable and protected. This will also allow businesses in the UAE to attract better talents from abroad. 

The government will also introduce a minimum wage system. 

The Emirati government has introduced a series of laws in its efforts to improve business conditions in the country. In its attempt to aid the economy, post pandemic, the government has also introduced friendlier business visas in Dubai.