Want to hire migrant workers in Qatar? As one of the world’s fastest-growing countries, it’s no surprise that Qatar has a culturally diverse workforce, with a majority of local companies employing international talent.

According to Statista, approximately 99.5 percent of the private sector workforce in Qatar is made up of foreign nationals.

However, before hiring international employees in Qatar, you must first understand the country’s labor laws and visa sponsorship requirements.

Here are the exact steps you must take to sponsor employment visas and confidently hire migrant workers in Qatar.


How to Hire Migrant Workers in Qatar


Employment in Qatar is mainly governed by Qatar Labor Law No. (14) of the year 2004 and Law No. 13 of 2018. These laws regulate the entry, exit, and residency of foreign nationals.

Pursuant to these laws, you must sponsor the work visa and permit of foreign nationals if you wish to hire them.

Of course, before initiating the sponsorship process, you must first source the right candidates through dedicated websites or recruitment platforms such as VideoWorkers.

Next, you must provide them with a work contract that is legally compliant.

You can find below the rules and regulations governing the employment of foreign workers in Qatar, along with the legal steps and procedures to follow.


Step 1: Create an Employment Contract


The contract you provide to your prospective employee must clearly outline the terms of employment such as:

  • Company’s name and place of work


  • Job title and description


  • Details about the employee, such as nationality and profession


  • Date of contract


  • Duration of the contract (unless you provide an indefinite-term contract)


  • Compensation and other benefits


  • Payment frequency, date, and method


  • Hours of work


  • Annual leave


Pursuant to Qatar’s labor laws, the contract must be in Arabic. Though you’re allowed to provide workers with copies of the work contract in other languages, in case of any dispute, the Arabic version will prevail.

Please note that the contract must be authenticated by the MADLSA (Ministry of Administrative Development, Labor and Social Affairs). You must also draft the contract in 3 copies: one for the company, one for your prospective employee, and one for the Ministry of Labor (MOL).

In order to help local companies streamline the hiring process, the Ministry of Labor launched an electronic system for multilingual work contracts.

The system allows you to easily create work contracts for employees and authenticate them in a printed form.


Step 2: Register Your Company with the Immigration Department


Before initiating the hiring process, it is mandatory to register your business with the Immigration Department of the Ministry of Interior.

Without completing this step, you won’t be able to apply for work and residence permits on behalf of your prospective employees.

To do so, you need to provide a set of documents including a copy of your business’s registration and a copy of the trade license.

Upon approval, the MOI will grant you an immigration card and a representative card.

Once you have obtained these cards, you can initiate the hiring process with the Ministry of Labor.


Step 3: Get Approval from the Ministry of Labor


After registering your business with the Immigration Department of the Ministry of Interior, you must get approval from the Ministry of Labor.

This procedure enables you to submit a block visa application and obtain work visas for your prospective employees.

Please note that the Ministry of Labor may grant you a limited quota of work visas. This depends on your company’s size and industry.

In order to request a block visa from the Ministry of Labor, you must provide information concerning the positions for each worker, their citizenship, and the total number of workers to be hired. You will also need to provide a copy of the employment contract.

To comply with the current Qatarization scheme and labor law, the Ministry of Labor will assess your application by taking into consideration factors such as the availability of Qatari nationals to fill the vacancy.

This is because article (38) of the Labor Law in Qatar stipulates that it is mandatory to verify the non-availability of qualified Qatari nationals registered in the registers of the Ministry.

Only if the position cannot be filled by a Qatari national, the Ministry will approve your application.

Do note that if you plan on recruiting domestic workers or workers in specific industries, you may need to meet additional requirements.


Additional Requirements for Specific Jobs


For those looking to hire domestic workers, the MOI has set out additional requirements:

  • You must show evidence of your genuine need to hire domestic workers.


  • You must show evidence of your financial ability to cover all the necessary expenses for the foreign workers.


  • The number of workers being hired should be proportional to the number of family members.


For other industries, you must take into consideration the following factors:

  • Seamen: The MOI will assess your application based on the vessel’s size and activity type.


  • Herdsman/Shepherd: If you hold livestock, you must first obtain an approval certificate from the Ministry of Environment.


  • Farmers: The MOI will assess your application based on the farm size and the specific agricultural activities.


Step 4: Apply for an Employment Visa


The next step you must take to employ migrant workers in Qatar is to arrange an employment visa on behalf of the foreigner. To do so, you need to request a temporary work visa from the Ministry of Labor.

In order to apply for a work visa, your company must meet the following requirements:

  • Have a valid CR (Commercial Registration)


  • The person using the Ministry’s online service on behalf of the company must hold a smart card for identity verification


  • The company must have the right to apply for the visa without any imposed sanctions


When applying for a temporary work visa, you must submit certain documents. These documents include a CR copy, the company’s immigration card, a copy of the employment contract, and a copy of the worker’s passport.

The application fee for a temporary work visa is QAR 200, and the processing time can take up to 4 weeks.


Step 5: Apply for a Residence Permit


Upon approval of the temporary work visa, your employee can enter the country. Then, they must wait for a Work Residence Permit (RP) to be issued.

This process enables you to convert the temporary work visa (which is valid for only 1-3 months) into a permit that enables your employee to reside and work in Qatar long-term.

An RP is an identity card that includes details about the worker, such as their full name, date of birth, occupation, and 11-digit ID number. You as an employer are responsible for submitting an application for an RP.

You can submit the application to the Ministry of Interior (MOI).

As part of the application process, your employee will have to undergo a medical examination to monitor infectious diseases.

The supporting documents for an RP application include:


  • CR copy


  • Copy of immigration card


  • Worker’s passport with temporary work visa


  • Professional and educational certificates


  • Medical certificate


Typically, it takes between 2 and 4 weeks to obtain an RP in Qatar.

To track an RP application, head over to the following link: https://portal.moi.gov.qa/wps/portal/MOIInternet/services/inquiries/residencypermits/rpapplicationtracking.


Migrant Workers in Qatar: Final Considerations


The process for obtaining a valid work visa and hiring migrant workers in Qatar is relatively straightforward.

Additionally, the thriving economy of Qatar makes it one of the most attractive countries for migrant workers.

This makes it easy for you to find qualified candidates for your vacancies – especially if you’re using a recruitment platform with a top-notch candidate database, such as VideoWorkers.

Plus, with VideoWorkers, sizing up candidate experience takes just a few minutes, as we encourage each worker to flaunt their skills through a quick skill-showcasing video.

If the idea of finding top talent through an innovative and easy-to-use platform appeals to you, create your free company account today. Top talents who want to contribute to the success of your company are already waiting for you!

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