Nepal, Qatar agree to revise 2005 Labour Agreement

RSS (KATHMANDU, 3 December 2021) – Nepal and Qatar have agreed to revise the Bilateral Labour Agreement. In the fourth meeting of the Nepal –Qatar Joint Committee, both parties agreed to revise the 2005 pact.

The Qatar side has accepted Nepal’s proposal for its support for socio-economic reintegration of those Nepali migrant workers returned from Qatar serving as one of the top destinations for Nepali migrant workers. Likewise, it has agreed to further systematize the Qatar Visa Centre. More, the Government of Qatar has given its nod to establish a training center at all provinces of Nepal targeting capacity enhancement of workers to be hired by it from Nepal.

During the meeting, the Nepali side was urged to lift a ban on domestic labour and in response, the meeting agreed to form a bilateral joint committee and incorporate the issues in course of revising the labor agreement being based on the recommendation of the same committee. Prior to this, a high-level committee from Qatar had called on Minister for Laour, Employment and Social Security, Krishna Kumar Shrestha and his team and discussed about safe and systematic labour migration .

In response to the Qatar’s request to lift the ban on domestic labor, the Minister pledged to reach to a conclusion after discussions with several bodies concerned. As he said, safety and welfare of workers would be in the top priority while processing towards that end. Prior to this, the Industry, Commerce, Labour and Consumers Committee of the Parliament recommended seven conditions for a destination country to hire domestic labour and directed the government to allow the process only in the fulfillment of set criteria.

During the meeting, the squad from Qatar is learnt to have expressed its readiness to be abiding by recruitment criteria as recommended by the Committee. The meeting discussed about the guarantee of social security of workers, workplace safety, health and insurance policy and so on. Joint Secretary at the Ministry of Labour, Employment and Social Security, Binu Bajracharya, led the Nepali side in the meeting and the team was joined by Under Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Pushpa Raj Bhattarai, and Under Secretary at the Ministry of Ministry of Labour, Employment and Social Security Dr Thaneshwor Bhusal.

Chairing the meeting, Ministry Secretary Yek Narayan Aryal presented the meeting agenda before the team from Qatar. Likewise, Mohammed Hassan Al-Obaidli, Secretary for Labour Affairs, Qatar led the Qatar in the meeting. Nepal and Qatar mark around three decades of the establishment of diplomatic relations. Both countries had signed the Labour Agreement in 2005 in a bid to make labour migration safe and systematic.

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