Monday, August 21, 2017 | ePaper

Expats in Qatar fear job loss

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Reza Mahmud :
Expatriate workers in Qatar are in fear for losing their jobs as the Saudi Arabia and other Arab neighboring countries imposed sanctions against that country.
"If the crisis does not end soon the expatriate workers from Bangladesh and other countries in Qatar may loss their jobs," said Alimul Islam, a Bangladeshi electrical factory worker from Doha.
According to the workers from different countries in Qatar, they initially thought that the crisis will end soon. But now they become anxious that the problem may go in deep.
"Firstly, our employers told us not to be worried. But now we found they are also anxious," said Alimul.
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirate, Egypt and Bahrain imposed sanctions against Qatar on June 5 alleging its support to terrorism, but Doha denied it.
The World Cup Football 2022 will be held in Qatar. To arrange the world cup, the country involved in huge construction works like building stadiums, hotels, guest houses and other sights in private and public works.
Huge foreign workers are hired for those works. The expatriate workers working with joy as the companies of the country have given sufficient wages for them comparatively the other neighbouring countries.
But the sanctions made the workers worried.
"I get 1,200 Riyal in wage. I send 800 Riyal to my family in Bangladesh every month to bear my        
children's education and other costs. But I fear to fail sending the amount of money due the new middle-eastern crisis," said Tahir Ahmed, a construction foreman in Doha.  
The sanctions pushed this Arab country in problems due to its dependency of foods and other logistics on Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
After imposing the embargo and cutting all land, water and air connections from those neighbours Qatar fall in crisis of foods, water and other essentials things.
Turkey and Iran are sending foods and other essentials to Qatar but it may not be sufficient as the two countries are situated in long distance.
"Milk and fruits price hiked immediately after the embargo. If the sanctions go for long the price of food may hike more. It will be a burden for us," said other Bangladeshi worker Farid.
He said the real price of per kg Apple was 7 Riyal. But after one week of imposing Saudi and other Arabian countries' sanctions, the price now reached to 18 Riyal.
Bangladeshi workers using facebook and cell phone said the Qatari people are now discussing the sanction related crisis. The country is now facing huge troubles to meet their own peoples' food demands. In this situation, some people are saying that they might send back foreign workers if the problem remains for long.
But some Bangladeshi businessmen in Doha said the country will overcome the situation with the support of some influential countries like Turkey, Pakistan, Kuwait and Iran.
Meanwhile, Turkey and Kuwait have started diplomatic endeavors to end the crisis.
"The country may overcome the crisis soon. The World Cup Football must be held in Qatar. In this reality, the construction workers here would not be sent back," Mahbubul Haque, a Bangladeshi businessman in Doha, said.
He admits that anxious has gripped among the foreign workers amid the sanctions reached in second weeks.
When contacted Jabed Ahmed, the Additional Secretary of Expatriates' Welfare and Overseas Employment Ministry told journalists, "We sent a letter to our embassy in Qatar to find out the problems of our workers there amid the new middle-east crisis. We hope the crisis will end soon and our workers might not face any problem due to this situation."

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