US envoy praises Qatar labor law reforms but says ‘lot of work left to do’

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US Ambassador to Qatar Timmy Davis praised labor law reforms in Qatar and pushed for implementation and better prosecution if such laws are violated.

On Tuesday in Doha, Davis said that Qatar had made “real change” to labor rights in recent years.

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“They talk about what it means to ensure that people can come here, work safely, earn a good wage, change jobs if that’s what they want to do. But they are overhauling a system that has not always been the most worker-friendly,” he said.

Davis acknowledged that there is “a lot of work left to do” on labor rights in Qatar, but open discussions that have been taking place were a move in the right direction, he added.

Qatar has faced scrutiny of the physical and contractual conditions for hundreds of thousands of migrant workers who were needed since the FIFA World Cup hosting rights were won 12 years ago.

The country has set up a workers’ support fund, which since 2020 has paid $164 million in compensation to more than 36,000 workers from 17 different countries, Human Rights Watch said in August, citing government data.

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