HomeLifestyleQatar World Cup shame: Builders are paid just 82p an hour in the oil-rich state that’s accused of slave labour – The Sun
Qatar World Cup shame: Builders are paid just 82p an hour in the oil-rich state that’s accused of slave labour – The Sun
AN army of migrant workers are being paid just 82p an hour to build stadiums in Qatar ahead of the 2022 World Cup.
This means many of the 28,000 people toiling away on the new infrastructure and pitches only get £158 each month while working a standard 48-hour week.
The Mirror revealed the low wages being offered to some of the workers who have travelled from Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and the Philippines to the oil-rich state.
One worker told the newspaper: “I am a tiler inside the stadium, and help with other work. I earn 900 Riyal (£190) per month.”
Another said: "Sometimes you do not get paid on time. Or there may be money missing if they do not pay overtime… You have to wait a long time for the bus at the end of your shift. It makes your working day even longer.”
FOOD, ACCOMMODATION AND FLIGHTS PAID FOR
They get food, accommodation, healthcare, a month's holiday and a flight home as part of their jobs.
May Romanos, Gulf Researcher of Amnesty International, said: “Things are not changing as fast as Qatar would like us to believe.
“In October 2017, Qatar introduced a temporary minimum salary of QR750 per month. It is less than the QR900 that the Nepali government has requested… Qatar risks falling behind on its promise to tackle widespread labour exploitation and abuse of migrant workers."
The wealthy state has been criticised in the past after Amnesty International found at least 78 workers who struggled to eat as they couldn't afford food.
In October, 2018, it was understood some employees had gone without pay for months and were owed as much as £4,000.
Things are not changing as fast as Qatar would like us to believe.
In a statement on what they label the Amnesty International Misleading Report, the Qatari government said the concerns highlighted are not tolerated by the state.
Fifa awarded the World Cup to Qatar in 2010 — a decision that has been mired in controversy ever since.
Amnesty International says migrants are being abused and exploited to work building new stadiums.
The charity said in 2018: "Some are being subjected to forced labour.
"They can’t change jobs, they can’t leave the country and they often wait months to get paid.
"Meanwhile, Fifa, its sponsors and the construction companies involved are set to make massive financial gains from the tournament."
There have been reports of 1,200 deaths of workers, but organisers said there have been far less, and in 2019 had the number at three.
In March, 2020, The Guardian reported that tragically there had been 34 stadium worker deaths in the last six years.
The Qatar Supreme Committee organising the event said the guarantee of workers receiving salaries is included in the contract they get before leaving their home countries, and was adamant late payment is not an issue.
Fifa said: “We take workers’ rights very seriously. We share the view of human rights organisations that additional progress is needed for the full implementation of comprehensive labour reform by Qatar.
“We know Qatari authorities are working intensely with other stakeholders in that respect.”
In 2017 a 40-year-old British man died while working on a stadium for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar – his construction firm said he had his harness cut.
The worker, who has not been named, was at the Khalifa International Stadium when the incident happened.
In June 2020, reports suggested up to 100 migrant workers working for Qatari design and construction company QMC had been unpaid for seven months and not had their residency permits renewed – leaving them at risk of being deported.
Amnesty International raised the issue with the Qatari authorities and some payments have been made but many are outstanding.
In a statement the Qatari government said they were 'firmly committed to the task' of seeing the migrant workers get paid.
QMC have been suspended from working on World Cup projects until all salaries are paid.