Under a welfare rating system launched this week, Dubai-based construction companies will be ranked according to how they treat their workers, Crown Prince of Dubai Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid said.
Construction companies involved in civil, electrical and mechanical work, which have been operating for at least two years, will be able to apply for a Taqdeer award, Sheikh Hamdan said on his website.
They will be judged on three criteria: 'essential fundamentals', which covers labour and health and safety policies, wages, facilities and infrastructure; on their culture and work environment, including justice and transparency, and administrative practices; and results, looking at performance indicators. Applicants will be given a score out of 1,000 and a rating from one to five stars, based on that score, the site said.
Companies with four- and five-star ratings will be given a certificate, and will have a competitive advantage in government tenders for new projects. It is also likely to give a competitive advantage in bidding for international contracts, Sheikh Hamdan said.
For the first year the system will only be open to companies involved in the construction of buildings, roads, bridges, tunnels, plumbing installation and power generation plants, Major General Obaid Mohair bin Surour, chairman of the permanent committee of labour affairs in Dubai said.
It will eventually be extended to factories in the country's free zones, where over 500,000 people are employed, he said.
"The extensive evaluation framework of the award will encourage companies to aspire to high standards in their management of labour. We are confident that the award will help set new benchmarks for good labour practices across sectors and throughout the region," Sheikh Hamdan said.