Summer work ban ‘boosts productivity’
, July 19, 2011
Bahrain's summer work ban has helped improve productivity, according a senior government official.
Despite fears the law would hit profits, it has helped workers perform better, said Labour Minister Jameel Humaidan.
Businessmen earlier complained the two-month ban on work between midday and 4pm during July and August would cost them hundreds of thousands of dinars. But Humaidan said several employers had indicated productivity increased after the rule was introduced.
'That was bound to happen now that workers' health is being protected and they are able to perform better,' he said.
The minister said in almost three weeks since this year's ban had come into effect a compliance rate of nearly 100 per cent had been reported.
'We had a compliance of at least 98 per cent last year but this time, it is certainly going to be better,' he said during a visit to a construction site near Bahrain Bay.
'As of now the compliance rate is 98.7 per cent, while it was 88.2 per cent in 2007 when the ban was first imposed.”
'While people are generally more aware and are not working in the outdoors when the ban is in place, what is encouraging is that more and more employers are coming to the ministry for guidelines. We are very proud the steps we took five years ago have borne fruit,” he added.
Humaidan said he had personally inspected several construction sites in the last few days and personally seen the ban being respected.
'There is at the moment no move to increase fines imposed on those not following rules since there is such a high degree of compliance,' he said. 'We are happy everyone is on board and steps are being implemented.'
Humaidan earlier toured several worksites and met officials in charge of the BD98 million ($260 million) North Manama Causeway project.
All outside work must stop from noon to 4pm throughout July and August, the hottest months of the year, according to a ministerial decree enforcing the ban.
Companies violating the law are liable to be fined up to BD300 ($795) per worker. – TradeArabia News Service