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UAE to ensure timely payment of workers' salaries

DUBAI, Oct. 2 (Xinhua) -- The United Arab Emirates (UAE) announced Sunday that a decree to guarantee workers being paid on time will come into force on Monday, UAE daily Gulf news reported.

The decree, launched by UAE Minister for Human Resources and Emiratisation Saqr Ghobash, "ensures employees' full payment of their salaries on time," the report said.

Maher Al-Obed, Assistant Undersecretary for the Inspections Sector, said "salaries paid on time is a major contribution towards labor rights protection which is highly recognized by the UAE."

Official statistics showed over one million blue-collar foreign workers, mostly from South Asia, work in the UAE's construction and service sectors, as some 3,700 construction projects worth 400 billion U.S. dollars are underway in the state.

The decree regulates the companies with over 100 employees shall pay salaries within a period not exceeding 10 days from the registered payday.

The ministry will halt granting additional work permits for any non-compliant company starting from the 16th day of delay.

Fines are set from 5,000 dirham (about 1,362 dollars) to 50,000 dirham, depending on how many days delayed.

If a company delays salaries for four weeks from the due date, the ministry must inform the UAE's judicial authorities "to take all necessary punitive measures against the violating company," said the report, adding the ministry "will halt other companies owned by the same employer, and forbid any upcoming projects by the same owner."

Regarding the firms with less than 100 employees, current regulations such as work permits ban or fines apply only if the company fails to pay salaries within 60 days.

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