Expat workers can start own business - UAE INFO

Sep 20, 2008

Expat workers can start own business

Workers and professionals can now start their own businesses without losing their jobs or changing their visas, said a top official at the Ministry of Labour. Humaid bin Deemas, Acting General Manager of the Ministry, told that the decision was taken by Minister of Labour HE Saqr Ghobash on Wednesday. It will allow expatriates who work in the private sector to set up their own business or become partners in a new company. This decision replaces the old rule obligating any expatriate worker who wanted to start his business to cancel his visa and labour card at the ministry and get an investor visa. Bin Deemas said that the new decision would open more opportunities for workers in the country. Expatriates who start their own business will, however, will not be allowed to work in the companies they set up with local partners. ‘The minister also endorsed a decision to streamline the rules of sponsorship transfer,' said Bin Deemas. According to the new decision, the ministry will transfer sponsorship between firms owned by one sponsor if branches of the firms are based in the same emirate for a charge of Dh500 per application. The ministry can, therefore, endorse the sponsorship transfer without referring to the current sponsor if the employer has delayed salaries for at least two months. Another ministerial decision obligates all firms in the country, recruiting more than 100 employees, to hire their public relations officers from among UAE or GCC nationals. Bin Deemas said the ministry will not accept any application from these firms if the PROs do not meet these new terms and conditions. GCC nationals who work as PROs are allowed to work in other firms owned by the same person.

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