LMRA CEO highlights details on new labour market reforms

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Manama, Oct. 6 (BNA): Chief Executive Officer of the Labour Market Regulatory Authority (LMRA) Nouf Abdulrahman Jamsheer has commended HRH the Crown Prince and Prime Minister’s directives to replace the Flexi Permit with a set of new labour market reforms. 


Jamsheer said that the new labour market reforms will include the registration of all current holders of Flexi permits and those without a valid work permit through labour registration centres. 


She noted that inspections will increase to identify employers and workers engaging in illegal activity, and that work permits will be linked to vocational and occupational standards to support a more vibrant labour market.


The new reforms have been introduced to safeguard the rights of employers, workers, and the Kingdom's business community, she added.


With regards to the registration requirements, Jamsheer said that workers can register only if they reside in Bahrain, have not absconded from their jobs and have a clear criminal record.  


Applications will not be accepted from those who entered the country on a visit visa.


Registered workers will not be permitted to obtain a commercial registration, or work in specialised professions except after obtaining a license to practice the profession or equivalent from the relevant authorities, she added.


Jamsheer noted that registered workers will be required to pay for health fees, and provide departure insurance.  


Flexi Permit holders will be given a period of time to register under the new system, ensuring that they have sufficient time to meet the requirements of the new changes.


She said that, in coordination with the Ministry of Industry and Commerce and the private sector, new labour registration centres and an online registration section in the "Sijilat" portal will be established to increase ease of worker registration.


The registration centres will maintain an up-to-date list of data that includes workers' information, their places of residence, and bank account details, in addition to ensuring that the registrants obtain the required health certificate and professional accreditations and are accessible if required.


Jamsheer added that the approved centres can register workers through the LMRA's website, which will contribute to the government's efforts in protecting human rights, addressing the issue of irregular employment, and gaining a clearer picture of the Kingdom's labour market demands.