Qataris fear spread of expats - survey

Significant majority believe expats causing imbalance and stealing jobs in Gulf state


I heard about one law in Qatar which I find unfair (and certainly against our Holy Quran) is that men have to get permission from the government to marry a foreigner.

My fianc�e is Qatari, he wants to marry me but felt so sad and so disappointed by realizing that he had to get the permission from his country.
He loves his country so much and wants me to live there with him .

I don't want money or other benefits that Qatari citizens have. I only want to live with the person I love without being against the law by getting married.

Then, I pray Allah every night and day, hoping that it will get better. And I swear I won't give up.


I think that the main issue here is who should call the other one "uncle". And the answer is no one. Expats need the jobs and are getting salaries for them, and GCC need the expats and are getting their money's worth. No is giving charity for the other one and no is giving services for free. It is called BUSINESS. Keep arguments civil my fellow commentators.


I have lived and worked in the region and continue to love the culture, people, food, and history. I work in oil and gas and deal and have dealt with many throughout the Gulf. That being said, many of the generalizations and stereotypes about work ethic in the Gulf are pretty much spot on, especially in regards to the younger generations.

There is a saying my father used to say that I feel pertains to the mindset of many in the Gulf.

You were born on third base, don't act like you hit a triple.

Derek Reddy

O well, there goes the neighbourhood ...


We have an old story. A camel was always laughing at the other camels. His owner asked him why, he said the other camels had a Hump on their back. His owner put him in front of a mirror.

Sorry for the children's fable but it was necessary given the level of comments by expats.

Thamir Ghaslan

My my!

Didn't several European heads of state claim multiculturalism is a failure without caring for being politically correct?

So why attack Qatar as racist, arrogant, ignorant, when multiculturalism *IS* a failure.

I'm sure the 20+ former USSR nations that split agree.

Or Quebec in Canada. Catalonia and Basque in Spain. Kurds in Iraq, Syria, Iran, Turkey, Kashmir, several African nations, Bosnia, and on and on and on.


Why are we comparing the GCC to western countries where their issue of multiculturalism relates to people immigrating for permanent residency & citizenship!
Surely the issue takes on a different significance here due to the 'Guest Worker' status for expatriates in the GCC who have temporary residence valid only till his work contract expires? Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan etc have guest workers but don't really feel such a threat to their culture from them!
If the state institutions and the citizens hold on proudly to their values, traditions and culture, then I really don't think that the locals have to fear multiculturism at all! I suspect that the issue has cropped up because of reasons other than the ones debated here. Maybe the pace of modernization is too fast to adjust to the rapid changes and that creates apprehension and mistrust? Some individuals are deliberately creating a fear psychosis because of their insecurity? I'm sure these fears are largely unfounded.


Thamir, your examples of "multiculturalism" are laughable. The Basques, Kurds, Kashmiris, etc were hardly people who entered the relevant countries willingly and asked to be assimilated. They were entire ethnic groups that had their lands absorbed into other countries and relegated to second-class human status! Can you be surprised about them being unhappy with that?
If those are really the best examples you have, then surely all you've done is to prove the inverse of your own point!


Why would anybody try to integrate when there are no incentives to do so? If I understand correctly, the guest workers in Qatar and its neighborhood are being reminded constantly about their status through direct and indirect means. Some comments symbolically suggest that they should be living close to the airport itself. It is ironic that that the people who don't want expats to strike roots are the ones pointing fingers at their lack of integration. Meaningless to compare these things to Canada because this country risen several stratospheres in the concept and practice of cultural mosaic.

Thamir Ghaslan


And how many times did Quebec threaten to break up from Canada?

Google multi cultural failure. Plenty of news and opinions to pick from.

Merkel, Sarkozy, and Cameron said it, pretty slow to catch up on how the average European feels about immigrants.

Regardless of ethnic or religious background, when a group of people move to another country and fails to integrate, accept the host country culture and language, you give ammunition for these announcements.


What European or North American countries have claimed multiculturalism a failure? None, do we struggle with it of course but no one has given up.. Canada ,UK ,USA one of our greatest strengths is our Multiculturalism. As a Canadian of french aboriginal heritage Quebec environment focus is on francophone immigrants in line with there special status in Canada. Canada with out our New Canadian Oil ,Gas are not the greatest resources .People are my friend, human capital treat them with respect and dignity and you shall be rewarded with great success.


Some people criticize with one eye closed. Specially to the place where they came from, the fact that most of them don't mention their home country in their destructive criticism.

Ahmed Marri

I have worked in Qatar for a long time, dedicated my time and energy with diligence and honesty. However one fine day i was served a termination notice due to restructuring in company. I had requested for NOC from my sponsor but he refused outright.

With Qatar's ambitions for a modern future and a proactive regional power which meddles in most of the regional affairs, claiming to bring a revolutionary change, including liberalization; such as what they did in Libya, Egypt, Tunisia and Syria- Qatar forgets or ignores to look into its own backyard.

I could not continue to work in Qatar as i was enslaved by my sponsor and did not let me work elsewhere. Thousands have been victimized, exploited and harassed like me. The local law and system had not jurisdiction over my sponsors's decision but to offer condolences for loosing my bread and butter.

The world is lost in making money and everyone seem to have lost eye for humanity as well.

Ed B

Lack of motivated "locals", lack of Skilled "Locals", lack of flexibility by the "locals", lack of willing to adjust to corporate culture by "locals". I can go on forever, there is lack of everything. 23 years in the region, and it still surprise me the complete lack of any professional standard of the majority of "local" workforce. I do not generalize, there are many exceptions too, but these exceptions surprise me also; in a good way; how could that local person stand out in a culture that is not working-performance oriented! These countries should look at exposing their people to the real world with "no special privileges because your local", working hard for your money, and climb the corporate ladder based on skills, hardworking and performance contribution; not on name, nationality and "privileges".....
Ps, I do not like to offend anyone; this is meant as realilty check.


The root of all this problem is a native concern of a loss of identity and culture, rather than a backlash at all expats for taking jobs away or purposefully disrupting that culture. Skilled and unskilled foreign labor in Qatar are here because they are needed and will continue to be needed for the foreseeable future, however, this is not to say Qataris are not concerned about losing their heritage.
This is what several government programs have tried to target and trying to provide a local Qatari feel to everything, from the rebuilding of Souq Waqif, Katara, the refurbishment of old buildings, and traditional sports events (camel, horse, falcon races, etc).
Qatar will continue to attract more foreigners in the lead to the 2022 World Cup, but we will always aim to not forget our identities and our roots, and that is the message that such surveys convey to our leadership in the government, and not a backlash on expats and just another excuse to complain.
Wish you all the best here!


This is a never ending debate that rears its head now and again to rile people up. The fact is that the status quo of expats working in the GCC is favourable for every one. The GCC wants to catch up with the developed world and for this kick start they need experienced people . Similarly , expats come to the GCC for a variety of issues either for a better quality of life, unemployment in home countries or whatever. Both need each other. Why does this have to be discussed over and over again?


Qatari, good to see the change from your posts from yesterday full of bile against expats. Its nice to see some rational posts...


All your points are valid and well taken. It is nice to have a person with a balanced perspective on current mind-set of Quataris. When an irresponsible statement is made by a government official, then it becomes an official position of the state and that creates bad blood. On the issue of attrition of cultural identity and values: it seems the country hasn't made up its mind on wheather it wants to open up the country to the global community or it wants to stay an insular society. It wants its airlines to expand globally, host large international events etc but don't want anybody with different culture associating with its people because its culture is vulnerable! Come on! Make up your mind!


I don't think we should be rude here and I think some of the comments have become that. By en large GCC nationals are very warm, generous people and if we're honest, in our own countries (well the west) there are an awful lot of lazy useless dole bludgers that do nothing but leach of the state. In every population you get good and bad. In India billions are just left in abject poverty lazy or not!

Culturally GCC nationals are a bit behind (sorry that's not meant to be rude, just a crude generalisation) western expats. I could go back way more than 10 generations and my family held down jobs that would not be too dissimilar to jobs done today. This population is largely a Bedouin one that has rapidly changed so of course there will be large differences in expectations and attitudes.

In general there is a difference in work ethic and motivation, which is probably largely down to over reward and over protection, but lets not be bitter about it, we're all here for a reason remember.


Steve, I think you should check your facts before stating that in India billions are just left in abject poverty, lazy or not. India's population is approximately 1.2 billion.

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