NEWS FROM THE UAE
Excerpts from UAE Dailies
No Plan to Enforce Annual Salary Hike in Private Sector - Labour Minister
ABU DHABI — Jan. 25: There is no move to bring in annual increment of salaries in the private sector, Minister of Labour Dr Ali bin Abdullah Al Kaabi has clarified.
Talking to Khaleej Times, Al Kaabi said the draft of the new labour law did not stipulate annual hike in wages of workers in the private sector.
The ministry should not intervene in this as it’s a matter between the employer and the employee, he said.
“We have an open market economy. So we allow the forces of demand and supply to decide this,” Al Kaabi said.
The minister also reiterated his earlier appeal to all employees and employers to read the draft of the revised labour law on the ministry’s web site www.mol.gov.ae.
Poultry prices likely to go up by 10pc
DUBAI — Jan. 25: Expect a 10 per cent hike in the prices of local poultry anytime soon.
Dr Hussein Husainon, Technical Secretary of UAE Poultry Association, while hinting at the hike, said higher production costs and increased prices of fodder and veterinary medicines, had made this inevitable.
He said his Association had not hiked poultry prices so far in view of the needs of customers. Currently, chicken was being sold at Dh10.50 in cash, Dh9.75 for distributors, and Dh11 for credit, as per the prices earmarked by the Ministry of Finance.
Referring to the continuous hike in egg prices over the last two months, Dr Husainon said it was not limited to the UAE alone. “In Egypt, egg prices have leapfrogged by 100 per cent. Most other countries have seen a 50 per cent jump. In the UAE, however, it will not exceed 10 per cent. And even this hike is only meant to cover production costs, with room for marginal profit,” he emphasised.
Besides, he added, the spurt in the last two months was mainly attributable to the ban on import of chicken and closure of some poultry farms because of the bird flu panic. Dr Husainon said he expected consumers to understand the situation and help support the local poultry industry.
Meanwhile, managers of shopping malls in Dubai have said any increase in local poultry prices would have its impact in the market. Said an executive at Al Madina Supermarket in Deira: “Right now, we are selling the local poultry at Dh11 and buy it at Dh10. But any price hike is bound to have its ripple effect.”
Said an executive at Talal Supermarket: “We don’t yet know the reasons for the impending price hike, but there should be a way out.”
Survey to collect data on family incomes, spending
DUBAI — Jan. 25: The Higher Committee for Family Income Survey will undertake a survey at the UAE level to compile data on income, spending, accommodation and lifestyle of an average family. This was decided at its first meeting at the Ministry of Economy in Abu Dhabi.
The survey will yield important data for decision making and planning.
The meeting was presided over by the Assistant Undersecretary for Planning and Statistics Affairs, Rashed Khamis Al Suwaidi.
The survey’s main objectives will be to gauge inflation rates, study spending habits and define the spending by an average family on commodities and services.
It will also measure flexibility of income to define the relative changes of spending on services with reference to education, profession, nationality.
Bogus Doctor jailed
Dubai - Jan. 25: A former sales executive was yesterday jailed for three months for faking his qualifications and posing as a fully qualified and trained doctor. The Indian, identified as KT and in his 30s, will be deported after serving his sentence in a Dubai prison, the Court of Appeal ruled yesterday.
KT, who was trained at a medical school in India never completed the required time limit as a working doctor to allow him to be employed in the UAE. By faking his qualifications he was granted permission to work as a doctor in a Dubai medical centre by the Minsitry of Health.
He was caught after his colleagues noticed numerous mistakes in his procedures and they reported him to medical authorities.
It was revealed in court that he had only qualified from medical college in India in 1995 and came to Dubai in 2002 to work as a sales executive for a large pharmaceutical firm. A police investigation revealed that his qualifications were false and that he had not even been in India during the times he stated he had been working as a doctor.
The court heard that during initial investigations he confessed to faking the documents, but then withdrew his confession when he reached court. His lawyer stated that his client was innocent saying: “He graduated from a medical college in India in 1995, which gives him the right to practice medicine. He worked as a doctor in India for a long enough period to work here.”
The Court of First Instance had originally sentenced KT to three months in jail during his trial, but had not ordered his deportation following his sentence.
Companies asked to abide by rules on use of cranes
DUBAI — Jan. 25: The Labour Inspection Department at the Labour Safety Section at the Ministry of Labour has asked construction companies and contractors to pay special attention to the UAE rules and regulations regarding inspection and testing of cranes and lifting equipment.
The directive has been sent to the companies following several fatal accidents on worksites recently. The heads of companies have been asked to follow the existing rules and regulations to ensure safety at work and protect workers against occupational hazards according to the ministerial order No: 32, No: 20 of 1982 and Federal Law No:8 of 1980.
The ministry has advised the companies to test all cranes and lifting equipment on the sites and make sure that all operators are fully trained by a qualified person, approved by the MoL. The certificates should be issued for these purposes every year.
Chains, ropes and other items must be tested every six months. Companies have also been asked to clearly display instructions about the maximum lifting capacity of the lifting equipment in Arabic and, if necessary, in another language.
Dubai safety drive targets motorcylces
DUBAI — Jan.25:Dubai Police have launched its first traffic campaign for safety of motorcycles and bicycles which aims at spreading awareness among users about traffic discipline.
Issa Aman, Deputy Director of General Department of Traffic, called on traffic officers to intensify the traffic campaign against reckless motorcyclists who endanger people life.
He said that quad bikes are banned and they should be driven in sandy areas only. He said that traffic police has the right to seize the vehicles and arrest drivers.
Dubai road naming
DUBAI — Jan. 25:Brigadier Dr Jamal Mohammed Al Merri, Deputy Commander-in-Chief of Dubai Police, reviewed yesterday the system to name Dubai roads. Dr Jasim Mohammed Al Rumeitha, Director of General Department of Operation, and Issa Al Maidor, Head of Road Naming and Numbering Committee, were also present.
Dr Al Merri said police receive many calls for help on 999, but police personnel often find it tough to reach the location on time. He said the new system will allow police to reach in time especially if the smart map system is implemented which determines the location of the person who call the police.
EASY FINE PAYMENT
Dubai - Jan. 25:Motorists will soon be able to pay parking fines at branches of Emirates Bank throughout the country. The RTA said it was also working on other projects, including a plan to enable motorists to pay for parking through their mobile phones. A comprehensive study, expected to recommend new parking charges, is also to be completed soon, said an RTA official.