DoFE: Demands for work permit droppedA total of 3,164 aspiring migrant workers have received work permit for Qatar since tensions flared in the Gulf on June 5.
A total of 3,164 aspiring migrant workers have received work permit for Qatar since tensions flared in the Gulf on June 5.
The number of Nepalis seeking work permit in the last six working days—from June 5 to 11—has dropped, said Spokesperson for the Department of Foreign Employment (DoFE) Mohan Adhikari.
“This is surely a significant drop in the number of Nepali applicants seeking work permit for Qatar,” said Adhikari.
According to Adhikari, on average 700-800 applicants used to receive work permit before June 5.
“It seems people have halted their plans of going to Qatar for now. The ongoing tension in the Gulf might be the reason behind this decrease in number,” added Adhikari.
The DoFE data shows the number of individuals seeking work permit has dropped drastically.
“Although there hasn’t been much change in demands from manpower agencies, fewer individuals are now applying for the work permit,” said the DoFE spokesperson.
Only 812 individuals have acquired work permit for Qatar in the last six days. Just 25 work permits were issued to individual applicants on June 6, a day after the Saudi-led bloc severed diplomatic ties with Qatar.
A total of 653 work permits were issued for Qatar on Monday—the day when news broke out about the Saudi Arabia-led sanction on Qatar. The number fell dramatically to 262 the next day before rising again to 726 on Tuesday.
However, recruiting agencies maintain the ongoing crisis have not affected their business.
According to Rohan Gurung, general secretary of the Nepal Association of Foreign Employment Agencies (Nafea), the Gulf crisis is not the sole reason behind the drop in the number of Nepalis seeking work permit in Qatar. “This is the month of Ramadan. There is not much work in Qatar during this season. So people are reluctant to go there,” explained Gurung. “We have not seen any decrease in regular demands for workers from Qatari companies so far. Besides, the local level elections are also responsible for this slump in demands for overseas work permit.”
He went on to add that it would be quite difficult to predict what impact the tension in the Gulf would have on the foreign employment industry.
Nafea—the umbrella organisation for all the manpower recruiting agencies—has requested the concerned authorities and recruiting agencies to assess the situation of Nepali workers in Qatar, Gurung said, adding, “We have instructed our member manpower agencies to contact respective Qatari companies, where they have sent Nepali workers, to learn about the situation of Nepali workers.”
According to the latest data, nearly 400,000 Nepalis are working in Qatar.