50,000 workers shifted to 2,000 new buildings to reduce overcrowding

The labor housing committees have reduced the overcrowding of 50,000 workers and shifted them to 2,000 new buildings. The committees are also following up with the private sector to provide isolation rooms within the housing compounds so as to reduce the chances of transmission of coronavirus infection among workers, the Undersecretary of the Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs (MMRA) for Classification of Contractors Dr. Ahmed Qattan confirmed on Friday.

During a symposium entitled “Labor housing — current challenges and proposed solutions,” organized by the Eastern Province Chamber (remotely) on Thursday, Qattan pointed out that the ministry would soon launch “labor housing” licenses for establishments, allowing them to convert buildings into labor housing units. He explained that the long-term plan is to allocate large plots of land in various governorates of the Kingdom and put them up for investment in cooperation with real estate developers to build new housing units, with an aim to create a parallel market for the current labor accommodation.

He pointed out that the process of organizing workers’ housing will be carried out gradually in cooperation with the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development, linking work permits with the existing regular housing for workers on “rent” (Ijaar) platform, and establishments will be given a grace period to rectify the status.