Almost 50 UAE recruiters shut down for domestic worker offences

Four firms in Abu Dhabi have been closed and fined Dh50,000 in just two weeks

A woman fills an application form for a job posting in Kuwait during a job fair at the Philippine Overseas Employment Agency in Manila in this September 20, 2010 file photo. An average of more than 3,000 workers leave the country daily to work as professionals, nurses, doctors, domestic helpers, seafarers and labourers overseas. The Philippines, the world's fourth biggest recipient of remittances after India, Mexico and China, received more than $1.5 billion worth of remittances monthly from Filipinos working and living overseas. REUTERS/Cheryl Ravelo/Files (PHILIPPINES - Tags: EMPLOYMENT BUSINESS SOCIETY) - GM1E6BJ1JLH01
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Nearly 50 recruitment agencies hiring domestic workers for the UAE market have been shut down for legal offences.

Officials said the establishments failed to obtain the necessary licences.

The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation shut down 45 recruitment agencies in the past year, with four recruiters in Al Ain fined and closed in the past two weeks.

They will now face fines of Dh50,000.

"An administrative fine of Dh50,000 has been imposed against the four recruiters in Al Ain and they were referred to the public prosecution," a statement read.

"The agencies had been closed with a closure label on their doors by the Department of Economic Development."

The Ministry said that temporary accommodation has been arranged for the domestic workers at the violating agencies, and procedures have been initiated to transfer them to ministry-approved firms.

It did not name the agencies or provide any further information.

Authorities in the UAE have warned of a spate of scams in which foreign workers are hired under false pretences.

Requiring applicants to pay to secure a prospective job or a visa – both illegal – are common scams.

The ministry warned legal action will be taken against companies that fail to follow the law.

Any worker or member of the public can report labour offences to the ministry's dedicated call centre on 600 590000.

“Field visits and inspection campaigns aim to protect the rights of in the labour market and boost its productivity. "We are relying on proactive monitoring and reports from the public to ensure recruitment activity is carried out by verified domestic worker recruitment agencies,” said the ministry.

Last month, Shamma Al Mahairi agency in Dubai and Al Barq Services Centre in Ajman were shut down after they failed to ensure that workers were in the country legally and did not pay fines that were issued to them.

Their licences were revoked as part of a larger campaign to improve standards in the industry.

Updated: October 15, 2023, 2:23 PM