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Job contracts to be offered in 11 languages

While English and Arabic copies are still required, prospective employees will be presented contracts in a language they understand

Gulf News

Dubai: Job offers and labour contracts will be offered in 11 languages, which have recently beem approved by the Ministry of Labour.

While English and Arabic copies are still required to be filed with the ministry, prospective employees will be presented contracts in a language they understand, to ensure they have a clear understanding of the employment terms and conditions.

The new measures follow the newly launched labour decrees that were implemented at the beginning of the year on the directives of the Labour Minister, Saqr Ghobash.

Humaid Bin Deemas, Assistant Undersecretary for Labour Affairs, said, “Arabic and English are two main languages in each job offer, labour contract and annexes presented to the worker, in addition to a third language that the applicant can understand. This applies both to workers coming from outside and those residing in the UAE that seek a new job or are required to move from one company to another.”

He explained, “The other approved nine languages are Bengali, Chinese, Dari, Hindi, Malayalam, Nepalese, Sri Lankan, Tamil, Urdu — languages which have been picked according to statistics highlighting the highest number of workers using them.”

“Adding these new languages confirms the ministry’s keenness to promote transparency between all parties on the terms and conditions of employment and their rights and obligations, before coming to the country to resume their duties.”

Earlier this year, the Ministry of Labour began the application of new measures to extract work permits under which the employer is committed to enclose job offers signed by the worker for those classified in the first, second and third levels, while thumbprints are required for those in fourth and fifth levels.

“Workers must look into job offers and annexes in their preferred languages before signing the contracts to reach a healthy work relationship between both sides. Annexes must be reviewed as they hold a number of labour laws and amendments,” Bin Deemas said.

“If proven that workers did not go through the annexes before signing the labour contract, the ministry will take the measures set forth in the Council of Ministers Decision No 40 of 2014 against the employer, who shall face a Dh20,000 fine for submitting incorrect data to the ministry.”

Bin Deemas said that labour disputes will be reduced as workers will recognise the nature of the work and employment terms before being officially hired.

“Previous cases show that after joining their jobs, workers claim a lack of commitment to working conditions that were agreed upon verbally between both ends, therefore, the ministry launched new contracting procedures,” he said.

Both labour contracts and annexes are available on the ministry’s website and workers can access these documents after filling in nationality, passport number and transaction type fields online.

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