UAE cuts Ramadan work hours for private sector

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Ramadan is expected to start this year on August 1

Ramadan is expected to start this year on August 1

Working hours for all employees in the private sector should be cut from eight to six hours during the Holy month of Ramadan, the UAE’s Ministry of Labour said.

A circular issued to companies in the private sector said the reduction in hours should not affect staff salaries, state news agency WAM reported.

“The working hours of private sector companies and establishments will be reduced from eight hours to six hours, without affecting the salaries of employees,” the news agency said.

Ramadan is expected to start this year on August 1, with all Muslim adults expected to observe a fasting period during daylight hours.

Non-Muslims are also banned from eating or drinking in public between sunrise and sunset.

Authorities in Dubai earlier this month warned of strict penalties for those caught breaking cultural laws in Ramadan.

 Offenders can expect one warning before they risk arrest and a fine of up to AED2,000, said Colonel Jamal Al Jallaf, deputy director of the Criminal Investigation Department.

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Posted by: James

Please call 800655 to complain regarding employees made to work for more than 6 hours during ramadan...

Posted by: Tired

Could someone advise me how to report employer bully tactics by making staff work over 9 hours a day , 7 day a week .
Thank You .

Posted by: A concerned party

it is law that, wherever you are employed with the UAE, freezone or not, your employees should not work more than 6 hours during Ramadan. I understand that employees, like myself, have deadlines to meet and will work when I need to to hit my deadlines but there are companies that I know of that are making their employees work 8 or more hours (non-muslim) exploiting their ignorance and/or fear of termination by bringing it up. I heard of one event management company in Knowledge Village that is telling their employees that it doesn't apply to TECOM companies and making them work full hours.

Posted by: James

My company wants all non-Muslims to work normal working hours, that is 10 hrs a day in an office job, is that illegal and what penalties are applicable?

I want to say something but don't want to be seen to be the only employee mentioning it.

Posted by: roshan

Dear All,
Pleae let me know if there is a number or emil ID where we can post complaint against working extra hours in Ramada period?Our work is 12 hrs in a day even on ramdan and no day off!!

Posted by: aisha

dear james,

Don't be shy to say something! it is your RIGHT to mention this very important issue and you, as an employee, could even open a legal case against your company for not tolerating the 6-working-hours per day! this applies for muslims, as well as non-muslims.

Posted by: Rafi


It's a great news and needs to be specially appreciated that it's extended to all expatriates and not only for Muslims.

There were more than 100 comments regarding eating in public, and you even distorted it in the headline that it was only for non-Muslims. May be all those who had issue with that law might also will have issue with working 2 hours less!

We need to understand that there were no discrimination in both the laws and law is basically enacted for citizens, which 100% Muslims (Vatican could be compared) and expatriates and visitors

comes under it just because they r inside the country.

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