The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Friday, February 12, 2016

Saturday, August 25, 2012
Front Page

Bangladeshi Workers

UAE slaps visa 'restrictions'

Reasons unknown

The United Arab Emirates has imposed restrictions on renewal and issuance of work visas to the Bangladeshis, said recruiting agencies and visa seekers.

Bangladesh's Consul General Abu Zafar in Dubai said they had been receiving such reports for two weeks but the UAE authorities were yet to officially inform them about it.

“We got some reports from Bangladeshi employers here that the authorities were rejecting visa applications. However, big employers of the Emirates have not made any such complaints yet,” he told The Daily Star over the phone on Thursday.

“Unless we learn it officially, we cannot say it is a restriction on Bangladeshi workers,” he added.

However, the reasons behind the reported restrictions could not be known as government offices are yet to fully function after Eid-ul-Fitr.

The UAE, which now hosts about 10 lakh Bangladeshi workers, the second highest number after Saudi Arabia, has been a sustained labour market for the last couple of years despite the global economic recession.

Bangladesh Association of International Recruiting Agencies (Baira) said it also received complaints that the UAE authorities were not renewing visas of the Bangladeshis working under Emirates companies.

However, visa renewal is on for the workers in foreign companies there.

“But issuing of new visas for Bangladeshis is also slow,” Baira executive member Hasan Ahamed Chowdhury told The Daily Star, adding that it would take a few more days to know what was actually happening.

According to him, the Bangladesh government needs to act promptly to figure out why such restrictions have been imposed on the workers. “This is urgent because the UAE is now recruiting the highest number of workers.”

Labour and Employment Minister Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain yesterday said in many cases the employers hired more workers than were needed, eventually leading to loss of jobs or underemployment.

In each of the last eight months, some 25-30 thousand Bangladeshi workers left for the UAE, he added.

The minister, however, said the UAE government was yet to inform Bangladesh about the restrictions. Dhaka will send a team to the UAE to look into the matter.

An official at the Bangladesh consulate general in Dubai said in many cases workers do not get salaries they were promised. Under such situations many workers change jobs and become irregular.

“Such irregularities might be the reasons behind the restrictions,” he told The Daily Star, requesting anonymity.

About 90 lakh Bangladeshis work abroad and send home about $12 billion per year.

In 2008, Saudi Arabia went slow on recruiting workers from Bangladesh, saying too many Bangladeshis were there.

The following year, Malaysia put a freeze on recruitment from Bangladesh. It has recently decided to hire workers from Bangladesh, but is yet to finalise the procedure.

Share on


Why wouldn't they? If Bangladesh can look the other way while their muslim brothers in Burma get killed, why should another muslim country give BD any preference?

: istiaque ayub

Giving shelter to citizens of other country and stopping renewal and issuance of work visas are not the same. Bangladesh's experience of supporting Rohingyas is very bad. We are already an over populated country, with so many numerous problems of our own. Bangladesh authority should request explanation from the UAE Embassy, Dhaka on the report of stopping renewal and issuance of work visas to Bangladeshis.

: friendfrombd


  • Mehdi Hasan Sheikh
    Saturday, August 25, 2012 02:14 AM GMT+06:00 (181 weeks ago)

    Serves the Bangladeshis right. You don't want to help out Muslims being tortured and killed in your neighbouring country and BD people should be treated the same. BD should not get any foreign aid. Lets see where this arrogance goes.

  • OpeeMonir
    Saturday, August 25, 2012 02:39 AM GMT+06:00 (181 weeks ago)

    Why not the Labour Counselor in our UAE Embassy in Abu Dhabi is not making an effort to find out the causes; everyone knows what reasons behind in recent actions are and I think BAIRA should not make any comments as they do not play any significant role in recruiting for UAE. There are some pressing issues and matter needs immediate attention.

  • Ahmed Jamil Farouque
    Saturday, August 25, 2012 06:29 AM GMT+06:00 (181 weeks ago)

    Non-issuance of visas and non-renewal of work permit in UAE and KSA,have nothing to do with Bangladesh,these occur due to non-full-fillment conditions by the employers or/and the workers,this happens to workers from any country of the World...Bangladeshis as workers are preferred over nationals of many countries,the trend has increased in recent months,specially after the Gulf States' strained relations with Egypt and Syria,who were providing thousands of workers to these countries.

  • Anonymous
    Saturday, August 25, 2012 08:50 AM GMT+06:00 (181 weeks ago)

    Find out the reason why UAE has slapped visa restrictions. This is important for Bangladesh and other Muslim Countries.

  • Sharif Mohammed
    Saturday, August 25, 2012 04:42 AM GMT+06:00 (181 weeks ago)

    These are all indications of failure of our foreign policy.At present we believe that in this world of nearly 200 countries we need only one country as our friend, guru and mentor.

  • nick
    Saturday, August 25, 2012 09:11 AM GMT+06:00 (181 weeks ago)

    This is actually a good news for Bangladeshis. You should earn skills and improve education and do not depend upon cheap labor export in Arab countries who are little more than slaves. Export high quality professionals to the civilized countries.

  • Shabbir A. Bashar
    Saturday, August 25, 2012 01:13 PM GMT+06:00 (181 weeks ago)

    This is nothing but Arab racism. Let's not forget their reputation for torturing foreign maids and using them as personal sex slaves.





The Daily Star

©, 1991-2016. All Rights Reserved