28 Mar 2018 – 18:31
By Pramod Prabhakaran / The Peninsula Online
Doha: British Parliament, yesterday, recognised and appreciated the efforts by Qatar to bolster the rights of workers.
In an answer to a Member of Parliament’s (MP) question, Minister of State for Middle East, Alistair Burt, said that “Qatar is working very hard to make sure it produces a good World Cup and a safe World Cup.”
Alex Norris, MP for Nottingham North and British Labour and Cooperative Party politician, said in parliament that Qatar has made significant positive progress in areas relating to workers’ rights and it should be spread to neighbouring states.
“This morning I pressed the Government once more to support Qatar’s progress on workers’ rights and help extend it to neighbouring countries,” he tweeted along with the video of his question and answer in the British Parliament.
Norris asked in the parliament: “Thanks Mr. Speaker. Last month, Impactt’s audit of the Qatari Supreme Committe, which is responsible for the World Cup, highlighted significant positive progress in areas relating to workers’ rights. Could the Minister tell me what efforts the British Government will be making to support further progress and promote it spreading to neighbouring states?”
Alistair Burt, Minister of State for the Middle East at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, replied: “Mr Speaker. I happened to see the Qatari organiser of the World Cup just a couple of days ago. They have an impressive presentation of what they’ve sought to do to improve not just workers’ right but welfare in relation to workers, not just now, but looking forward to the final construction phase. I think concerns have been well expressed but sense is that the Qatari system understands this very well and is working very hard to make sure it produces a good World Cup and a safe World Cup.”
Earlier, at its 331st Session, the ILO’s Governing Body had recognised the progress made by Qatar, and welcomed its commitment to ensuring fundamental principles and rights at work for all workers.
“After closing #ILO complaint on the 8th of Nov. 2017 against it, Qatar signed a 3-year technical cooperation programme with ILO, expected to make it a #Model for the region. Glad to see this recognition in the British Parliament,” Lulwah Al Khater, Foreign Ministry Spokesperson, said in a tweet.
Qatar Embassy in UK also welcomed the development and tweeted “ #Qatar is grateful to our #UK partners for engaging in constructive dialogue on workers’ rights. We are committed to leading the region on labour reform.”