A Guide to Working Abroad in Qatar

 A Guide to Working Abroad in Qatar

There are many jobs available and anyone looking for work in the Qatar has a good chance of becoming employed. The economy is fast-growing and the country’s GDP was nearly US$9 billion in 2018. Oil and gas is the largest industry in the country. As such, if you are looking for a job in Qatar, this is the best industry to be in. However, manufacturing is also a large industry, as are finance, insurance, and real estate. Similarly, building and construction are two of the biggest industries for employment in Qatar.

Right now, Qatar’s construction industry is booming. There are also many projects around Qatar’s 2030 vision deadlines. Because of this, there is a huge demand for laborers in the country. Hospitality and tourism are also two industries that have huge growth potential. Therefore, if you are trying to find a job in Qatar, these are two great industries to be in. The government is trying to push these as an alternative income source so that the country is not so heavily reliant on oil. As such, it invested $17 billion in 2008 to create new infrastructure projects to support this. Hotels and restaurants are constantly recruiting, so look to these for jobs in Qatar.

Work culture in Qatar

Because there are so many expats in Qatar, the work culture brings together diverse styles and attitudes from all over the world. In some ways, this international environment can be very exciting and tolerant. However, Qatar is a Muslim country, therefore you can expect a more conservative working style. Another facet of this is that the work culture is very hierarchical and patriarchal, which is something to be aware of.

There are local idiosyncrasies that you should be aware of, too. For example, personal relationships are the key to business in Qatar. Because of this, you will need to build a rapport with your colleagues and business associates. In addition, while English is the main business language, knowing a little Arabic goes a long way. Something to note is that punctuality is not considered that important in Qatar, and you should expect a relaxed attitude toward timekeeping.

Labor laws and labor rights in Qatar

Qatar has several labor laws that are designed to protect employees. You should be aware of these before you begin finding a job in Qatar. Below are a few employee rights you should be aware of:

  • Employees should not work more than six days a week or 10 hours a day. Additionally, you should receive overtime pay after eight hours;
  • If a company terminates an employee before the end of the contract, they have to pay an End of Service Benefit. However, this only applies if the termination is without cause;
  • Companies must provide private health insurance for foreign employees;
  • Employees receive indemnity pay at the end of their contract. This is usually 15-20 days’ salary over the first three years or a month’s salary for every year after that;
  • Most employees are entitled to three or four weeks’ annual leave;
  • Employees are also entitled to up to two week’s sick leave at full pay.

In addition to all of the above, many foreigners receive extra benefits. These vary depending on the contract. However, they can include the following:

  • Return flights to visit home;
  • Housing allowance;
  • Education for children;
  • Company car.

Work visas in Qatar

All foreigners looking for work in Qatar must get a residency permit. However, you can only get this if an employer sponsors you. Generally, the company will get you a temporary visa to enter the country and then complete formalities once you are there. Once you have an employer who can sponsor you, they will need to handle all the paperwork to get you a residency permit. If you received the job offer before entering the country, your employer must convert your temporary visa into a residence permit within two to four weeks.

These residence permits allow you to bring your family to Qatar, as well. They must be renewed each year by your employer, however.

Qualifications to work in Qatar

In general, most companies in Qatar will expect you to have a university degree. However, if you are in a specialized profession, you may need professional qualifications. For example, lawyers, doctors, and teachers all need to show specific qualifications related to their jobs. All qualifications must be notarized by the Ministry of External Affairs. Additionally, your degrees must be attested by the Qatar Embassy in your country. Furthermore, you will need to provide a detailed letter from your university or board confirming your qualifications.

Other requirements in work in Qatar

In addition to all the above, there are a few things you may need in order to work in Qatar. For example, you will have to get a medical check. In some cases, you may also need a criminal record check. This is particularly the case for government jobs or licensed professions

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