Pakistan, UAE to set up joint platform to facilitate overseas Pakistani workers

Pakistan, UAE to set up joint platform to facilitate overseas Pakistani workers
On the sidelines of the ongoing 108th session of the International Labour Conference in Geneva, on Monday Nasser Bin Thani Al Hameli, UAE Minister of Human Resources and Emiratisation, and Tahir Hussain Andrabi, Acting Permanent Representative of Pakistan to the United Nations, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU).
Updated 20 June 2019

Pakistan, UAE to set up joint platform to facilitate overseas Pakistani workers

Pakistan, UAE to set up joint platform to facilitate overseas Pakistani workers
  • New memorandum of agreement signed for protection of Pakistani labour
  • 1.6 million Pakistani expatriates live in the UAE, remit over $4 billion annually

Pakistan and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have agreed to set up a joint platform to expedite the resolution of grievances and legal disputes of Pakistanis working in the Emirates, a senior Pakistani official said on Tuesday, hoping the mechanism would ensure a risk-free working environment for the Pakistani workforce in the UAE.
On Monday, on the sidelines of the ongoing 108th session of the International Labour Conference in Geneva, Nasser Bin Thani Al Hameli, UAE Minister of Human Resources and Emiratization, and Tahir Hussain Andrabi, Acting Permanent Representative of Pakistan to the United Nations, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) in the presence of senior officials from both sides.
Tassaduq Hussain, Senior Joint Secretary at the Pakistani Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development, called the understanding with the UAE a “landmark achievement,” saying it would help streamline the recruitment process of Pakistani workers and ensure their legal rights in the UAE.
“It has been mutually decided that Pakistani workers will sign an ‘Employment Job Offer’ with the UAE-based employer before landing in the UAE to avoid any fraud and job scams,” he told Arab News.
In order to ensure a risk-free working environment for Pakistani workers upon their arrival in the UAE, Hussain said the job offer would clearly state the rights and obligations of the worker and the employer, which could not be changed at a later stage unless in favor of the worker.
Hussain said both Pakistan and UAE had also agreed to set up a six-member committee, with three members from each side, to resolve disputes of overseas workers and facilitate them in the case of any legal proceedings or complaints.
“It is decided that any complaint or legal issue of Pakistani workers in the UAE will be resolved within a six-week time,” he said, adding that it has also been decided to initiate “cogent measures to curb human trafficking and money laundering” by ensuring strict implementation of relevant laws.
As per the MoU, Hussain said pre-departure and post-arrival training programs would also be conducted to make workers aware of UAE labor laws.
According to official statistics, more than 1.6 million Pakistani expatriates live in the UAE and work in different public and private departments. They remit over $4 billion annually to Pakistan.
Mohammad Sharif Leghari, manager of Zain Sharif Recruitment Agency, said the signing of the ‘employment job offer’ before the departure of workers to the UAE would help curb fraud in the recruitment process.
“This is a good initiative,” he said, “but the real challenge for the government remains to ensure its strict implementation and ban any overseas employment promoter for life if found guilty of its violation.”