Delegation of the European Union to Georgia

Qatar: Statement by the Spokesperson on the changes in exit visas for domestic workers

Brussels, 19/01/2020 - 08:10, UNIQUE ID: 200119_1
Statements by the Spokesperson

The measures adopted by Qatar last week to eliminate the exit permit for expatriates, mainly domestic workers, constitutes another key step towards the dismantlement of the kefala ("sponsorship") system governing the employment of migrant workers, which gives employers excessive control over them. These workers will now be free to leave Qatar, either temporarily or permanently, during their employment contract if they decide to do so.

The EU strongly supports these labour reform efforts, which we have long advocated and discussed with Qatar especially in our informal Human Rights Dialogue, most recently in December 2019. We also support the cooperation between the Qatari government and the International Labour Organization. The EU looks forward to further improvements of the legal framework covering worker' rights and the effective end of the kefala system in Qatar.