By Wafa Issa, Gulf News , 26 Feb 2007
Dubai: Temporary work permits, which facilitate the temporary transfer of jobs, earlier confined to certain job categories, is now open to all workers, according to a ministerial decision.
Dr Ali Bin Abdullah Al Ka'abi, Minister of Labour, issued a decision to this effect last Thursday, stipulating temporary work permits to be open to all job categories.
Previously, workers could only apply for the temporary work permit once for a period of six months.
The new decision makes it possible for workers to obtain a temporary work permit twice within a period no less three years.
Humaid Bin Deemas, Assistant Undersecretary at the ministry, said the new decision aims to facilitate the work force movement within the country.
"To make the temporary work permit open to all workers in the country is an exemption from the sponsorship system, as it gives workers opportunity to work for another sponsor for a period of time," said Bin Deemas.
To obtain a temporary work permit, the worker should have a valid residency visa, have worked for his original sponsor for one year at least and have a written approval from his sponsor.
However, workers who have labour cases in court or could prove that they have not received salaries for two months or more, can be exempted from the sponsor's approval and the one-year condition, by the undersecretary and assistant undersecretaries at the ministry, according to the decision.
While the new employer pays work permit fees and salary, the original sponsor is responsible for worker's legal entitlements. The work permits fees range from Dh1,000-3,000 depending on the company's classification at the ministry.
"The new decisions fall within the ministry's vision of having more flexible rules and regulations that are more compatible with the requirements of the job market," said Bin Deemas.