Qatari authorities are in the final stage of completing a draft sponsorship and exit permit law, according to the head of the National Human Rights Committee (NHRC).

Ali bin Smaikh Al Marri, chairman of the NHRC, said the government was taking serious steps to solve problems faced by people due to the present sponsorship and exit permit rules.

He said the draft of the amended law had been forwarded to the NHRC earlier and it had given its views and recommendations.

“We have seen the draft and we have given our views and our recommendations,” the chairman said.

He was speaking to reporters after signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) here yesterday for cooperation with Yemen’s Ministry of Human Rights.

Al Marri said that the draft law seeks to strike a balance between the rights of workers and their employers and offers more guarantees of freedom and protection to foreign workers.

He didn’t say as to when he expected the draft law to see the light of day and did not give details of the changes made to existing sponsorship rules.

The NHRC, he said, was set up more than 12 years ago, in 2002, and was mature enough to share its experiences with Yemen.

Replying to questions, Al Marri said that the Yemeni human rights ministry’s role would be reduced in the realm of human rights and its place would be taken by a committee similar to the NHRC.

Yemen’s visiting minister for human rights said help from Qatar’s NHRC in fighting human trafficking and slavery in Yemen was part of the MoU signed by his ministry with the NHRC.

Izz Al Deen Said Al Isbahi said that the MoU covered many areas of cooperation, including issues related to development of human rights systems, strategies and action plans in his country.

Support for capacity building in the area of human rights is to be one of the main areas of cooperation, said the minister.