Over 42,000 expatriate workers benefited from the six-month general amnesty for workers staying in Bahrain illegally, the CEO of the Labour Market Regulatory Authority Ausamah Abdullah Al-Absi revealed.
Al-Absi added that 76% of those who rectified their legal situation preferred to stay in the kingdom, stressing, at the same time, zero-tolerance against violators.
A total of 42,019 foreign workers had benefited from the grace period which expired on December 31, 2015, which is an unprecedented achievement, Al-Absi said in a press conference marking the end of the amnesty period.
LMRA CEO expressed sincere thanks and appreciation to all sides which contributed to the success of the grace period, including the Interior Ministry’s Nationality, Passports and Residence Affairs (NPRA) and embassies of the countries of origin of workers, noting that the move will reflect positively on the performance of the kingdom’s economy.
He explained that 76% of those who benefited from the grace, or 31,894 workers, preferred to stay in the kingdom after moving to new employers, while 24%, or 10,125, wanted to return to their home countries, adding that Bangladeshi, Indian and Pakistani workers, respectively, were the most beneficiaries of the amnesty period.
Foreign workers’ desire to stay in the kingdom confirms Bahrain’s status as being among the best countries for expatriates as shown in international reports in this regard. In the annual Expat Insider 2015, the biggest expat survey worldwide, Bahrain was ranked first in the Arab region and the Middle East and 17th in the World.
Al-Absi warned that the LMRA would continue the inspection campaigns to clampdown on lawbreakers and take legal action against them.