LMRA reduces quota for locals to 15% in garments sector

Ausamah A. Al Absi, board member of the Bahrain-based MENA Centre addressing at the WIR 2012 launching ceremony on Thursday
Labour Market Regulatory Authority (LMRA) put in place a new system for garments sector aiming at rising the wages of Bahraini employees and improve their working conditions, LMRA’s CEO Usama bin Abdulla Al Absi said.

According to the agreed formula, now the garments sector requires to keep Bahrainisation level at 15% against 20% as per the previous guidelines.

Al Absi explained that the move would enable the ready-made clothes industry to compete at the international level through a package of new facilities and more flexibility in the Bahrainisation system in return for additional gains for Bahraini workers whose majority are women.

In statement to the Press, Al Ebsi said that a study was conducted by the Research and Studies department revealing that the salaries of the Bahraini work force in ready-made clothes sector are low and that the sector faces export problems given the big number of similar factories across the GCC countries, Jordan, India and Pakistan.

At present the sector employs 3067 foreign workers and 658 Bahrainis, noting that LMRA reached an agreement with the management of those factories to increase the salaries of Bahrainis by 33% immediately and reduce the rate of Bahrainisation from 20% to 15%.

Al Absi said that LMRA’s initiative aimed at creating better conditions as well as increasing productivity and enhancing the income of Bahraini workers, in line with the wise leadership’s directives to support the public and private sectors and enable them to achieve more gins locally and regionally.

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