Officials in Qatar have apparently softened requirements on expats who wish to switch employers inside the country.
The move comes a month after a new law that relaxes no objection certificate requirements took effect.
In late December, Qatar’s labor ministry published a list of conditions that needed to be met for an expat to change employers.
Among the more controversial provisions was a sort of retirement requirement that stated foreigners must be under the age of 60 years old.
Additionally, residents were told they can only work for companies that have an approved visa to hire them.
This is because authorities in Qatar are very specific when granting work visas to businesses based on profession, nationality and gender.
Both provisions had drawn swift criticism from residents.
Many complained that the new law was too complicated and didn’t actually make it easier to change jobs.
However, the Ministry of Administrative Development, Labor & Social Affairs now appears to have removed both the age and the approved visa requirements from its list, which it just tweeted again on Wednesday.
لمعرفة شروط وضوابط اخطار جهة العمل الحالية بغرض (تغيير جهة العمل/مغادرة البلاد) والفئات المستهدفة تفضل بزيارة الرابطhttps://t.co/fnk4iTJBTi
— وزارة التنمية والعمل (@ADLSAQa) January 11, 2017
The same day, QNA reported that Qatar’s Cabinet approved a draft executive regulation to Law №21 of 2015 on the entry, exit, and residence of expatriates.
It said the draft included provisions about “the controls of entry and exit of expatriates, work and non-work residence permits, visits, the entry and sailors, transit pass, return, residence permits and others.”
This is the second change to the law that officials have made in the past few weeks.
In early January, the Emir approved an amendment to keep employers in charge of exit permits.
Previously, a clause in the new law stated that an automated system was to be set up under the Ministry of Interior to grant “leave certificates” for expats.
This was initially supposed to be the case. But officials said in December that expats would still need to ask their employers for permission to leave Qatar for any reason.
However, a new grievance committee has been put into place to address any complaints from expats whose sponsors do not grant the exit permits.