Reimbursement of recruitment fees
Initiative description: Continuing to work with our contractors and other sub-contracting parties to reimburse all workers engaged in the construction of FIFA World Cup 2022™ sites for recruitment fees that they may have paid, regardless of whether they have proof of payment or were hired prior to the commencement of FIFA World Cup 2022™ construction projects. This includes covering costs incurred by workers for recruitment and medical fees, as well as any general expenses they met during their mobilisation. We will also encourage our contractors to reimburse recruitment fees for their workers not involved in FIFA World Cup 2022™ construction projects, and promote reimbursement of recruitment fees among tournament service contractors.
The payment of recruitment fees is a global issue affecting millions of migrant workers worldwide. This practice is illegal under both international and Qatari law and prohibited by the Workers’ Welfare Standards (WWS). The SC continues to work with its contractors and Other Contracting Parties (OCPs) and their labour suppliers to ensure that workers engaged on SC projects are compensated for any recruitment fees they may have paid in their home countries. Any subsequent hiring by these contractors and OCPs must also be in accordance with ethical recruitment practices.
To compensate SC and legacy workers who were hired prior to the start of SC projects, for hardships they may have encountered when moving to Qatar, the SC has set up a Universal Reimbursement Scheme. Through the scheme, the SC has shifted the burden of proof to contractors and OCPs to show that workers have been hired ethically, as the vast majority of workers are unable to prove that they have paid illegal fees.
Over 49,000 workers (30,973 SC workers and 18,066 non-SC) are receiving reimbursement of recruitment fees, totalling QAR 103.95 million. Approximately QAR 83.02 million has been reimbursed as of December 2021. A total of 266 contractors have committed to reimburse workers and 11 have extended the reimbursements to 18,066 non-SC workers, evidencing the positive legacy that the tournament is having on workers’ welfare beyond event workers and tournament time.
Ministry of Labour (MoL) is also attesting all commitment letters provided by contractors and OCPs, thus providing further assurance and oversight of the reimbursement process and execution.