Qatar’s local manpower agencies, which currently only deal with maid recruitment, are urging the government to require private companies to source unskilled and semi-skilled labor exclusively through them.
The 200-some agencies say installing a local middleman will help curb problems like the sale of work visas and runaway employees because it will increase accountability.
According to (one manpower agency owner), what’s happening presently is that in many cases workers are promised higher salaries and perks as well as good accommodation by recruitment agencies in their respective countries, but when they arrive here they feel cheated as they find that the payments are low and lodgings not up to the mark.
Being based overseas these agencies are not accountable to the Qatari authorities, aside from the fact that they charge exorbitant sums as service fee from hapless workers. As for local manpower agencies, they can be held accountable for any fault or irregularity committed by them.
That’s how things would work in theory, at least.
In reality, less than a third of domestic help recruitment companies operating in the country received positive evaluations from Qatar’s Ministry of Labor earlier this summer.
Only 8 of 121 manpower agencies received “A” grades during evaluations, while another 27 received “B” grades. The remaining 86 businesses were all given a “C”, the lowest grade according to the MOL’s new ranking system.