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Help for less

The UAE Ministry of Labor has reduced the deposit expatriates pay to bring in domestic help to AED2,000.

November 19, 2009 4:13 by

The fee for expatriates to sponsor domestic workers in Dubai has been reduced to from AED5,000 to AED2,000 – matching the deposit Emiratis pay for sponsoring domestic help, Gulf News reported.

According to a senior official from the Ministry of Interior, expatriates used to pay a AED5,000 deposit plus an additional AED5,000 to cover medical and visa costs.

“The deposit will now be refunded only when the domestic helper visa is cancelled and when she leaves the country,” Major General Mohammad Ahmad Al Merri, Director General of the Dubai Department for Residency and Foreigners Affairs told Gulf News.

These government incentives could be an attempt to maintain the number of domestic workers in the country, amid the financial crisis.

At the same time, the changes include an amendment that would see expatriates being refunded only when domestic workers were issued their residency visa, which is valid for one year only.

This could be problematic for sponsors since it is not uncommon for workers to run away. Both Emirati and expatriate sponsors stand to lose a lot of money if their domestic workers run away.

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  1. Barry on November 22, 2009 5:51 am

    This is great news for all but the authorities should also reduce the medical & visa charges which is Aed 5000 per year to same as the deposit amount.

    Secondly I agree with KIPP that the authories should do more and one of the way is to make it a Labour related issue rather than Immigration or Police.

    Just as normal workers need to sign in front of the labour officer for all dues at end of contract the same should be for domestic helpers. Also the doestic helpers should be able to report the problems to both immigration and labour against the employer so that if a employer is black list for mistratment of their domestic helpers they will not be issued another visa or approval in the future.

    I hope this will help to curb the mistratment of domestic helper.

  2. neeta on November 22, 2009 8:26 am

    The visa charges for housemaids of Dhs 5000 /- every year are expensive , instead if the government can look at a 2 year contract wherein the cost reduces , the time and efforts to renew the visa every year reduce and also this would encourage the sponsors to lock in the services . Most of the time the house maids go home once in two years for 60 days the visa part would also help the complete process to be simpler and more economical .
    If the visa costs are reduced a lot of illegal house maids working will reduce , leading people to directly employ staff and create more openness in the economy .


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