Bahrain denies it had shut down employment office in Qatar

March 14, 2010
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Work set to start soon on the 40-km Bahrain-Qatar Causeway

A Bahraini labour official has denied claims that the employment office it had set up in Qatar has been shut down.

The office was established in 2007 in cooperation with the Qatari authorities to help Bahrainis willing to work in Qatar.

However, with few people signing up for positions in the neighbouring country, the office activities came to a standstill.

“The labour ministry has not cancelled the office, even though it is still assessing the merit of the Qatar employment project,” Sabah Al Dossari, the labour assistant undersecretary for labour affairs, said in a statement. “Our focus right now is on local strategic projects to help further reduce unemployment figures, mainly among university graduates, and to improve wages,” he said.

According to the official, the labour ministry has not received requests from Bahraini graduates to take up positions in Qatar.

“We are confident that the office work will be reinvigorated when the causeway linking Bahrain and Qatar is ready as it will greatly facilitate movement between the two countries and vastly reduce living costs for Bahrainis,” Al Dossari said.

Around 2,500 Bahrainis currently work in Qatar, according to figures from the labour ministry.

“We are pleased that they are working without encountering any problem,” the ministry said.

Al Dossari said that Bahrain was not negotiating deals with other Gulf Cooperation Council countries to open employment offices in their capitals.

Manama and Doha are expected to start the construction of the 40-kilometre causeway, the world’s longest bridge, in the near future.

Bahrain’s only existing terrestrial link is with Saudi Arabia via the 25-kilometre King Fahad Causeway, officially opened in November 1986.

         

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About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Career
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
Education
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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