Employers urged to register with LMRA
Manama, October 18, 2007
Employers who fail to register with Bahrain's Labour Market Regulatory Authority (LMRA) will be denied work permits to recruit foreign workers, starting January 1.
Less than 10 per cent of the nation's employers have registered with the LMRA, despite repeated calls made by the authorities to do so, said Labour Minister and LMRA chairman Dr Majeed Al Alawi.
He was speaking after opening the eight-day LMRA festival at the Bahrain International Exhibition Centre yesterday.
The opening ceremony was attended by Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and Labour Fund chairman Dr Nizar Al Baharna, ambassadors, top officials of various ministries and leading businessmen.
The festival is an excellent occasion for all the employers in Bahrain to register their companies with the LMRA and to cleanse their data, said Dr Al Alawi.
'Despite several calls made by the LMRA, not even 10pc of the employers have turned up to register,' he revealed.
'There are about 45,000 commercial registrations (CRs) issued for business establishments.
'It is mandatory for all of them to register with the LMRA before December 31, failing which they will not be granted work permits to recruit foreign workers.'
Dr Al Alawi urged all members of the expatriate community also to attend the festival and enrol themselves with the LMRA system.
'By registering with the LMRA, they are establishing their legal status in the kingdom,' he added. The minister toured various stands put up at the festival by the LMRA partners, including various government ministries and foreign embassies.
LMRA vice-chairman and Almoayyed Group chairman Farouk Almoayyed urged the private sector to support the festival.
'The business establishments should realise that cleansing their data with the LMRA is in their own interest,' he said.
'Maybe those who employ illegal workers are hesitant to approach the LMRA counters.
'For such people, this is an opportunity to legalise the status of all their workers.'
The festival will promote awareness among both the employers and employees about new LMRA laws which emphasise their rights and responsibilities, said LMRA chief executive Ali Radhi.
'The festival is being held in co-ordination with other ministries and foreign embassies in Bahrain,' he said.
'Among those supporting the festival are our stakeholders like the Industry and Commerce Ministry, the Labour Fund, the Health Ministry, the General Directorate of Nationality, Passports and Residence (GDNPR), and the Central Informatics Organisation (CIO).'
Radhi said the festival would give an opportunity to all employers to update their record with the LMRA.
'They should remember that starting January 1 we shall be billing them according to the number of employees shown on our register,' he added.
'The employees should realise that they are also getting an opportunity to register with the LMRA during the festival. When the registration counters capture their fingerprints, it establishes their legal status in the country.'
The event, being held from 9 am to 9 pm on all days, is expected to attract a total of about 100,000 people, said festival organising committee chairman and LMRA e-services manager Waheed Al Balushi. He said the festival would feature food and games stalls and offer raffles giving away attractive prizes like air tickets.
'Different embassies will present cultural programmes at the festival, which is open to all free of charge,' he revealed. - TradeArabia News Service