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Mon 25 Jan 2016 01:59 PM

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UAE adds more languages to new worker contracts

Nine languages approved to help unskilled workers understand their rights better in the UAE

UAE adds more languages to new worker contracts

The UAE's Ministry of Labour has approved 11 more languages to be included in new worker contracts to help employees understand their rights better.

The move follows the newly launched Labour Decrees that were implemented at the beginning of the year on the directives of the Labour Minister Saqr Ghobash, news agency WAM reported.

While Arabic and English are two main languages in each job offer and labour contract presented to the worker, a third language is added that the applicant can understand.

Humaid bin Deemas, Assistant Under-Secretary for Labour Affairs, said: "This applies both to workers coming from outside and those residing in the UAE that seek a new job or are required to move from one company to another."

"The other approved nine languages are Bengali, Chinese, Dari, Hindi and Malayalam, Nepalese, Sri Lankan, Tamil and Urdu - languages which have been picked according to statistics highlighting the highest number of workers using them."

He added: "Adding these new languages confirms the ministry's keenness to promote transparency between all parties on the terms and conditions of employment and their rights and obligations, before coming to the country to resume their duties."

Earlier this year, the Ministry of Labour began the application of new measures to extract work permits under which the employer is committed to enclose job offers signed by the worker.

Last year, an international human rights group applauded moves by the UAE to protect low-paid migrant workers by bringing in new labour laws.

Human Rights Watch said the UAE decree is the first measure of its kind in Gulf region.

The move aims to help migrant workers, many of whom have previously said that when they arrive in the GCC, they are forced to sign contracts that pay less than promised in contracts they signed before they left their own countries to take the jobs.

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