Ministry steps to put a lid on ghost CRs in Bahrain

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MANAMA: The steps taken by the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism (MOICT) to enhance the level of competitive advantage of doing business in Bahrain is crucial to the Kingdom’s economic development. The steps will also help to get rid of ghost commercial registrations.

The MOICT has launched many services through Sijlat empowering actual businesses in broadening the economic base as well as creating job opportunities will continue to play role as a catalyst for creating sustainable economic development in the country.

The business community, broadly, applauded the services which includes the modernization of the CR procedures, consolidating the activities by reducing them to 381 from 1800 previously and opening up almost 97% activities for foreign investors.

The above steps were also highlighted by Mr Zayed Al Zayani, the Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism (MOICT) during a media briefing on revised CR fee issue in his office on Monday.

“Some businesses do not need to keep certain activities and they need to review their business requirements,” the Minister said, adding that with revised CR fee, Bahrain would continue to enjoy the status of a competitive business destination in the region.

The revised CR fee hike has necessitated the businesses to keep only those lines of businesses which have been generating revenues streams or delete them from their systems.

It may be recalled the Cabinet in its meeting in February 2015 had set up a high-powered committee to regulate the issue of ghost commercial registrations (CRs) in order to put a lid on illegal workers.

The Committee at that time was tasked to look into accommodation of illegal workers, especially bachelors, away from residential areas to avoid negative social effects.

Upon directives of the Cabinet, the Ministerial panel, was formed with representatives from the Ministries of Interior, Works, Municipalities Affairs and Urban Planning, Industry and Commerce and Social Development, as well as the Labour Market Regulatory Authority (LMRA).

The Cabinet had also given the task of updating commercial registrars and cancelling the inactive ones to ensure they are not used to recruit workers for non-specified purposes. The step was followed by intensifying inspection campaigns on registrars and workers themselves.

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