Former Chatham House Council Member and Former United Nations Association (UK) Board Member, Alpesh Patel, CEO of Tradermind, Supports Roundtable at Parliament Report Published Today on Middle East Labour Issues
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Today, CEO of Tradermind Limited, Alpesh Patel, former Council Member of Chatham House (the Royal Institute of International Affairs) and former Director of United Nations Association (UK) released the following statement regarding the publication of the Roundtable Report today on labour regulation in the Middle East in general and Qatar in particular.
‘The key objectives of the Roundtable are very important at this time of regional conflict: “to engage in honest and open independent, objective discussions on Labour regulation in Qatar, with a wider vision to promote improvements throughout the Middle East. Encourage further serious discussions, involving businesses, government officials and other experts in their areas, for the benefit of Qatar. Ensure Qatar continues on the path to improvement, safeguarding advances made from the effects of the embargo. As an international community, commend positive improvements in Qatar while questioning and criticising the nation if it overlooks the exploitation of workers. Encourage further labour law improvements in the region with examples from construction companies in the UK on the benefits to their employees.”’
‘As I have said on my BBC Newspaper Reviews when discussing regional issues, there is a role for business, and the UK, but the first onus is on the country’s themselves. I hope we will in the future be able to share best practice. Whilst visa-free travel extension for domestic workers and laws to protect employment rights are to be welcomed, and we recognise cultural changes take time, nevertheless they must continue to be pushed and I hope to be able to encourage UK business to participate in changes.’
‘I can do no better than quote the Chair, Baroness Verma, “We should focus on how Qatar is in the process of making changes in the cultural fabric of the society that has existed for centuries. Nothing happens overnight. At the same time, we, as the international community, need to ensure that Qatar does not discontinue on its path. The county should not rest till it has ensured all angles of worker welfare.”’
The Roundtable Report is available at: https://issuu.com/investingbetter/docs/roundtable_
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