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HomeQatar TimesQataris frustrated with confusion surrounding new retirement law

Qataris frustrated with confusion surrounding new retirement law

There have been general confusions over numerous laws in the country.

Qatari citizens took to social media to express their frustration at what has been described as “confusing” retirement laws.

On 14 February, the Shura Council, Qatar’s legislative body, had approved two draft laws on social insurance and military retirement. Both draft laws state that the minimum retirement pension shall not be less than 15,000 QAR and not exceed 100,000 QAR.

This is also the highest limit in the region.

The draft laws also stipulate that Qatari citizens who are not eligible for retirement pensions can receive exceptional pensions from the government. Periodic pensions can also be granted per a decision by the Council of Ministers.

One Twitter user pointed to the overlapping parts of the retirement pensions law, describing clauses as contradictory.

“Is this reasonable? The law guarantees the expatriate worker an end-of-service gratuity without restriction or condition. For the citizen, there are terms and conditions that hinder or prevent the entitlement of the end-of-service gratuity,” he said.

Citizens aged 40 can also retire, provided that they had worked for 15 years. Expats are not eligible for retirement pensions from the Qatar government.

Qatari citizens on social media have also questioned the delay of the enforcement of the law, urging the government to implement it sooner rather than later.

One person commented on the delay, saying that “the retirement law is going through an early retirement”.

People have urged the implementation of the retirement laws before the fasting month of Ramadan, a time when spendings often increase.

Local confusion

Besides the retirement law, there have been general confusions over a number of other laws in the country.

This was seen during the historic Shura Council elections last year, when the local community said that the electoral laws were unclear. At the time, there were questions over eligibility for voting and running for the elections, the first of their kind to take place in Qatar.

Since the first legislative elected body came into office in October, Qatari social media users called for all Shura Council sessions to be broadcast live. Many said that the move would enable citizens to engage in the meetings and understand the suggestions presented by the Council.

On Monday, Shura Council member Ali Al Attiyah tweeted that he presented members of the body with a proposal over freely communicating with the general public and the media.

“Well done. People criticise the members of the Shura Council and make fun of the electoral experience…because decisions that affect the citizen’s life are passed by the Council, an example of this is the notorious retirement law,” replied one user to Al Attiyah.

In addition to laws, there has been what appeared to be a lack of provision of clear guidelines over several local aspects. This was seen earlier this week at the Abu Samra borer, where long cues of travelers were seen as some were turned back for not having a pre-departure PCR test.

The government later issued clear travel policies, under which it exempted GCC and EU nationals and residents to obtain pre-departure PCR tests, unless the country is under the red list.

The move is believed to be triggered by the scenes of chaos at the crossing.

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