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Bahrain has invested significantly in infrastructure development, such as the Bahrain International Airport and the Bahrain Logistics Zone, which benefits businesses involved in logistics and trade.
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The country’s diverse population includes expatriates from various backgrounds, and English is widely spoken, facilitating communication for international businesses.
Bahrain provides a high quality of life for residents, with modern infrastructure, excellent healthcare, education, and a range of cultural and recreational opportunities.
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In Bahrain, there is currently no minimum wage. Employees are only entitled to the agreed amount upon individual or collective bargaining.
Standard Working Hours
The working week varies between 40 and 48 hours depending on company policies. In the month of Ramadan, the working hours are reduced to 6 hours a day.
The standard working week is Sunday-Thursday.
The maximum daily overtime should not exceed a duration of two hours. For each extra hour worked during the day, employees are compensated with their regular wage plus a minimum of 25%, and for nighttime hours, they receive a minimum of 50% extra.
Salaries in Bahrain are usually paid monthly, generally on the last working day of the month. Hourly employees, day laborers, weekly wage earners, or those on a project basis must be paid by the employer at least once every 2 weeks.
Paid time off
Upon reaching one year of service, employees are granted a minimum of 30 days of annual paid leave, which is accrued by 2.5 days per month. This system allows employees to use their vacation benefits even before completing a full year of employment.
Employees are entitled to 55 days of sick leave, with full wages for the first 15 days, half pay until the 35th day, and with no pay from the 36th day onwards. The entitlement of a worker to sick leave on full or half pay may be accumulated for a period not exceeding 240 days.
Employees are generally entitled to a specified number of sick days with full or partial pay, depending on their length of service. The exact sick pay entitlement can vary based on factors such as the duration of employment and the terms of the employment contract.
Female employees are entitled to 75 days of maternity leave with benefits paid for only the first 60 days. Employees may request up to four additional months unpaid leave following the end of their maternity leave.
Paternity leave entitlement is up to 5 days after the birth. However, generally companies offer 1 day of paid paternity leave.
Termination of Employment
The Labor regulations in Bahrain offer considerable flexibility regarding the termination of employee contracts. Generally, employees can be released at the employer’s discretion, if valid reasons are specified, and a notice period is granted prior to the intended termination date. Kuwaiti labour law stipulated that employees terminated without valid cause after one year of service were entitled to severance pay. The amount of severance pay depended on the length of service and the employee’s basic salary.
After the formal notification is given, either the employer or employee has the option to conclude the contract, provided that at least 30 days’ advance notice is given before the termination date. The employment agreement continues to be effective during this notice period, and both parties are required to fulfil all responsibilities outlined in the contract.
The probation periods can last up to 3 months, which is most common. However, this can be increased to 6 months dependent on certain occupations.
Bahrain’s visa rules outline entry and stay requirements for foreign visitors. Depending on the purpose of travel, visitors can obtain various types of visas, such as tourist, business, or work visas. Tourist visas usually allow stays of up to 3 months, while business visas permit short-term stays for professional purposes. Work visas are issued to individuals with approved job offers from Bahraini employers. Nationals of certain countries are eligible for visa-on-arrival or eVisa options. Visa extensions and transfers are possible under specific conditions. It’s crucial to adhere to the visa’s terms, exit before its expiration, and follow Bahraini laws during the stay to avoid any legal issues.
The standard rate of VAT in Bahrain is 10%.