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Qatar approves draft law amending some provisions of the Labour Law

On June 4, 2020

Qatar’s state Cabinet has approved a new draft law to amend some provisions of the Labour Law. According to Qatar News Agency, the draft law aims to improve regulation of workers’ housing and increase protection for workers’ financial rights, including increasing penalties for employers who fail to pay workers’ wages. 

However, no other details were given and the text of the law has not been made public yet, it’s unclear how the law will increase the regulation of labour’s housing or the new penalties stipulated.

Qatar's Cabinet also issued circular No. 24 of 2020 on determining working hours for commercial activities, as it moves to ease COVID19 restrictions and resume some commercial activities from 4 June 2020 onwards.

Businesses will be allowed to operate from 7 am to 8 pm (Sunday to Thursday), with the exception of outlets selling food products, pharmacies, restaurants delivery services and a few other essential services, which will continue to operate as normal. 

Qatar has also relaxed physical distancing rules to allow four people from different households, including the driver, to be in the same vehicle, while public buses will continue to operate at half capacity.

According to the latest data by the World Health Organisation, as of today, Qatar has the highest rate of COVID-19 infections counted per 1 million people in the world at 21,576 confirmed positive cases per 1 million population.