UAE launches 'early leave' policy for expat workers

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UAE launches 'early leave' policy for expat workers

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has announced the launch of an "early leave" initiative for the country's largely expatriate workforce.

The scheme, which was announced yesterday by the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation, aims to enable expat workers who employed in the UAE's private sector to return to their home countries. 

Expats are being encouraged to leave during the period of social disatancing measures implemented in the past week by the authorities in an effort to contain the spread of covid-19.

The initiative is seeking to help expats willing to go back to their home country by bringing forward their annual leave so that they can use it now while the country is taking measures against the coronavirus."

According to WAM news agency, the initiative is seeking to help expats willing to go back to their home country by bringing forward their annual leave so that they can use it now while the country is taking measures against the coronavirus.

The "early leave" scheme is being overseen by five ministries: the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation, the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the General Civil Aviation Authority and the National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Management Authority.

The government in Abu Dhabi released instructions for employers and employees on how to apply for the scheme.

Employees will be asked to submit their annual leave dates or agree with their employers on unpaid leave.

All UAE-registered firms need to comply with the following procedures for early leave requests:

  • Specify the leave duration by signing an additional temporary form for the job contract
  • Book a return ticket for each employee
  • The early leave is treated as unpaid leave, and the employment contract is unchanged
  • Work residencies for those who travel back to their countries will be renewed automatically

 

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Christopher Copper-Ind

Christopher Copper-Ind is editor-in-chief of International Investment. Before this, he was editorial director of The Business Year, from 2014 to 2017.