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To promote ease of doing business and to support its customers Jebel Ali Free Zone (Jafza), the GCC’s largest special economic zone, will become the first free zone in the country to return cash and bank guarantees to its clients through its new Workforce Protection Programme initiative that is set to roll out in September of this year. The move will provide added benefits to employees and infuse AED 1.3 billion back into Dubai’s economy that companies can invest in their operations and strengthen their businesses.

The decision is geared towards supporting goals set by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to improve worker rights and protections under the UAE Government’s insurance initiative.

Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem Chairman of the Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation and the Jebel Ali Free Zone Authority said:

“Jafza welcomes the UAE government’s latest initiative as it will play a significant role in taking the country in the right direction. Our people are our greatest assets, and we are committed to providing them with a fair work environment that ensures they receive all the rights, privileges, and protections that should be afforded to them as core contributors to the nation’s economy. 

“Through the Workforce Protection Programme, we are striving to raise standards for the UAE’s private sector by providing businesses with a model they can emulate successfully and help fulfil the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum as outlined in his 50 Year Charter.”

Under the new Workforce Protection Programme, companies will avail insurance coverage that will help protect the workers in case of wage default by their employers. This coverage will extend to all existing Jafza sponsored employees, and will be applied by default to any new workers from the time they receive their work visas.

DP World, UAE Region and Jafza have adopted critical roles in Dubai’s economy as key employers, accounting for 16.2 per of the emirate’s total workforce. Jebel Ali Port and Free Zone employees are 1.4 times more productive than the average UAE employee, contributing to over 33% of Dubai’s GDP in 2017.

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