Indians top list in Bahrain worker registration fest

June 9th, 2008 - 3:45 pm ICT by IANS  

By Aroonim Bhuyan
Dubai, June 9 (IANS) Indians topped the list of expatriate workers registering with Bahrain’s Labour Market Regulatory Authority (LMRA) over the weekend at a labour enrolment festival being held in that Gulf nation. There were 10,451 Indians among a total of 18,856 expatriate workers who registered with the LMRA in the first four days of the festival, which runs from June 4 to 21 at the Bahrain International Exhibition Centre, less than a month ahead of new labour laws coming into effect in Bahrain.

“We kept the festival at the Bahrain International Exhibition Centre open during weekends, including Friday, for the convenience of expatriate workers,” LMRA e-services and public relations manager Waheed Al Balushi told the Gulf Daily News newspaper.

“The aim of the festival is to complete the registration of all expatriates.”

Indians were followed by Bangladeshis (4,633), Pakistanis (1,540), Filipinos (683), Sri Lankans (294) and Nepalese (488). Others totalled 767.

Bahrain is home to around 275,000 expatriate Indians.

Under the new laws coming into effect from July 1, the LMRA will become the sole authority over all labour employment procedures in Bahrain.

It will become mandatory for all foreign workers to register with the LMRA, especially for renewal of work visas and travel-related visas.

Earlier this month, the Bahrain government approved a set of new fees for expatriate workers.

Employers will have to pay 200 Bahraini dinars ($530.60) every two years for each work licence issued or renewed. This will cover a no-objection visa, residence permit, return visa and medical check-up for each expatriate.

Apart from this, a monthly BD10 ($26.50) fee will be levied on each expatriate worker.

For each family member of an expatriate worker, a two-year fee of BD90 ($238.70) will be levied.

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